WASHINGTON — President Joe Biden on Wednesday inflated the impact of his policies on U.S. jobs created in his first half-year in office, misleadingly stating his administration had done more than any other president. He neglects to mention he had population growth on his side in his comparison.
A look at some of his claims during a CNN town hall in Cincinnati:
BIDEN: “We’ve created more jobs in the first six months of our administration than any time in American history. No president, no administration, has ever created as many jobs.”
THE FACTS: His claim is misleading.
While Biden’s administration in the first half year as president has seen more jobs created than any other president — just over 3 million in the five months tracked by jobs reports — that’s partly because the U.S. population is larger than in the past.
When calculated as a percentage of the workforce, job growth under President Jimmy Carter increased more quickly from February through June 1977 than the same five months this year: 2.2% for Carter, compared with 2.1% for Biden.
Since the late 1970s, the U.S. population has grown by more than 100 million people.
It’s true, though, that the economy is growing rapidly — it expanded at a 6.4% annual rate in the first three months of the year — and is expected to grow this year at the fastest pace since 1984.
Biden’s $1.9 trillion rescue package contributed to the vigorous growth, but much of the expansion also reflects a broader bounce-back from the unusually sharp pandemic recession, the deepest downturn since the 1930s. Even before Biden’s package, for example, the International Monetary Fund was projecting U.S. growth of over 5% for this year.
Biden is also leaving out the fact that the U.S. economy remains 6.8 million jobs short of its pre-pandemic level, and the unemployment rate is an elevated 5.9%, up from a five-decade low of 3.5% before the pandemic.
Associated Press writer Christopher Rugaber contributed to this report.
EDITOR’S NOTE — A look at the veracity of claims by political figures.
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