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Op-Ed: Trump Inherited a Meek Economy, and Made It Roar

This article originally appeared on Real Clear Markets on September 10, 2020.

Once again, Democrats are trying to attribute President Trump’s economic success to President Obama—and their claims are no truer than they’ve ever been.

Joe Biden’s running mate, Kamala Harris, claimed last month that Trump “inherited the longest economic expansion in history from Barack Obama and Joe Biden” and “ran it straight into the ground.”The media parrot these claims. NBC ran an article in support of Harris’s claim entitled “Data show Trump didn’t build a great economy. He inherited it.” The article notes that new jobs averaged 215,000 per month over Obama’s last four years but only 182,000 per month over Trump’s first three.

This comparison is misleading, however, and ignores factors including job openings and a worker shortage. The National Federation of Independent Businesses conducts a monthly survey asking business owners, “What’s the most important problem facing your business today?” Under Obama, they cited taxes and regulation as numbers one and two. After Trump cut taxes and slashed regulations, business owners cited finding qualified workers as their number one problem.

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