President Donald J. Trump spoke glowingly about “the great American comeback” in his February 4 State of the Union address. Those relishing this renaissance’s biggest gains tend to be those who need them most.
“Jobs are booming, incomes are soaring, poverty is plummeting,” President Trump said. “The years of economic decay are over.”
“Gone too are the broken promises, jobless recoveries, tired platitudes, and constant excuses for the depletion of American wealth, power, and prestige,” the president continued. “In just three short years, we have shattered the mentality of American decline, and we have rejected the downsizing of America’s destiny.”
“Under the last administration, more than 10 million people were added to the food stamp rolls,” Trump specified. “Under my administration, 7 million Americans have come off food stamps, and 10 million people have been lifted off of welfare.”
“In eight years under the last administration, over 300,000 working-age people dropped out of the workforce,” Trump added. “In just three years of my administration, 3.5 million people — working-age people — have joined the workforce.”
Recent figures from the White House Council of Economic Advisers confirm that these and other benefits accrue mainly to the less prosperous.
CEA calculated the growth in earnings between 2009 and 2019, including all eight of Obama’s years as president and the two years and 11 months of President Trump’s tenure for which data were available. The chart and graph below illustrate these striking results:
- Under Obama, the top 10 percent saw their earnings increase 2.4 percent versus 3.3 percent on Trump’s watch — a 41.2 percent improvement under Trump. But the bottom 10 percent’s earnings expanded just 1.9 percent during Obama, compared to a 4.9 percent rise under Trump — a whopping 161.5 percent Trump bonus.
- Under Obama, the earnings of whites waxed 2.1 percent versus 3.2 percent on Trump’s tenure, a 50.4 percent enhancement. Meanwhile, the earnings of blacks inched up 1.8 percent under Obama. But they leapt to 3.8 percent under Trump — an extra 118.1 percent.
- Under Obama, managers’ earnings grew 2.5 percent, rather than 2.4 percent under Trump, a 3.8 percent reduction during the Trump years. But workers saw their earnings accelerate 2.4 percent during the Obama administration versus 3.0 percent with Trump in charge — a 27.5 percent Trump advantage.
“Data show President Trump’s pro-growth policies are delivering the inclusive growth that government interventions in the economy aim for, but often fail to deliver,” the CEA’s Jared Meyer told me. “Across the board, this is a blue-collar boom.”
“The so-called experts didn’t foresee this economic boom,” said CEA’s acting chairman Tomas Philipson. “More than 7 million jobs have been created since President Trump’s election, exceeding the Congressional Budget Office’s projection by 5.2 million. Additionally, the prime-age (25-54) labor force shrank by 1.6 million under the Obama administration’s recovery, but has expanded by 2.3 million people since the 2016 election.”
“Instead of living in poverty and being dependent on government programs, previously-forgotten Americans are becoming self-sufficient through work,” Philipson added. “Since the 2016 election, the three largest welfare programs have seen enrollment fall by more than 10 million as incomes rise.”
Philipson also rejected the notion that Trump is simply surfing Obama’s job-growth wave. “The labor market’s revival over the past three years is not a continuation of past trends, but instead a result of President Trump’s pro-growth policies,” Philipson said.
“If we hadn’t reversed the failed economic policies of the previous administration, the world would not now be witnessing this great economic success,” Trump declared. “We are advancing with unbridled optimism and lifting our citizens of every race, color, religion, and creed very, very high.”
The rich are getting richer, but the poor, forgotten and neglected are progressing — and more swiftly than the advantaged
Despite the left’s obsession with income inequality and wage gaps, Obama’s big-government approach actually exacerbated these factors. The haves moved up and the have-nots spun their wheels or actually slid downhill.
ObamaCare, tax hikes, multi-billion-dollar corporate bailouts, Cash for Clunkers, Solyndra and at least 18 other green-energy bankruptcies, phantom “shovel-ready” jobs, regulatory micromanagement of even ceiling fans and ice-making machines and fetishistic focus on so-called “global warming” all created the very economic conditions that the left decries: The rich got richer, and the poor stagnated or got poorer.
Conversely, President Trump’s and the GOP’s $1.5 trillion Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, two regulations deleted for every new one imposed, energy independence, and an overall pro-business tone have liberated overlooked Americans from Obama’s economic dungeon.
The rich are getting richer, but the poor, forgotten, and neglected are progressing — and more swiftly than the advantaged.
Honest liberals should stop slamming President Trump and thank him for delivering what they claim to want: a boost for those with the least to thrive in the mainstream and savor the American Dream.
Too bad congressional Democrats failed to join Republicans, who stood up in the House chamber Tuesday night and cheered this great news. Instead, Democrats sat on their hands and pouted over their economic model, which is more shredded than Speaker Nancy Pelosi’s copy of President Trump’s address.