Psaki, Dems Falsely Claim Republicans Have No Plan to Deal with Inflation
Democrats have gone through various talking points to try to blame others for the nation’s skyrocketing inflation.
The consumer price index surged 8.5 percent in March compared to a year ago and was up from 7.9 percent in February, CNBC reported.
The rate was the highest since December 1981.
By way of comparison, the month former President Donald Trump left office, January 2021, the inflation rate was 1.4 percent.
Democrats first blamed the nation’s inflation spike on transitory factors. Then they said it was due to supply chain issues.
More recently, President Joe Biden and White House press secretary Jen Psaki have sought to pin inflation on Russian President Vladimir Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine: Putin’s price hikes.
“We need to do more to reduce costs for the American people.”
White House Press Secretary Jen Psaki says the White House expects the Consumer Price Index report on inflation for March “to be extraordinarily elevated due to Putin’s price hike.” pic.twitter.com/MsImm8189U
— CBS News (@CBSNews) April 11, 2022
They have also blamed the oil companies for taking too much profit.
Now, the Democrats’ argument apparently is, “Sure inflation’s bad, but it’s outside of our control, and Republicans would do no better.”
Last week the party tweeted, “Republicans still have no plan to fight inflation.“
Republicans still have no plan to fight inflation.
And Republicans are proposing RAISING costs by raising taxes on working families, making health care more expensive, and doing nothing to lower prescription drug prices.
— The Democrats (@TheDemocrats) April 15, 2022
This latest tactic is built on a talking point Psaki floated in November.
“The president is using every weapon in his arsenal to fight inflation,” she told reporters at the time.
“What are the Republicans putting forward?” Psaki asked. “They’re screaming from a bullhorn. They’re tweeting about it. They have absolutely no plan.”
WH Press Sec. Jen Psaki on inflation: Republicans are “screaming from a bullhorn, they’re tweeting about it, they have absolutely no plan.” pic.twitter.com/9z9LBRosVJ
— The Recount (@therecount) November 30, 2021
“What the American people should know and understand is that the president has had a plan to fight the pandemic, to address price increases, to keep the supply chain moving. We welcome them working with us on that,” the press secretary said.
Their plan still is to spend more borrowed, printed money, which would make inflation worse.
Republicans warned back in the spring of 2021 that passing the $1.9 trillion American Rescue Plan would be inflationary.
The legislation garnered no GOP support because so little of it had to do with directly responding to the health needs created by the pandemic.
According to USA Facts, the bill included over $413.6 billion for stimulus checks, $350 billion for state and local governments, $242.4 billion for enhanced unemployment benefits, $170.5 billion for schools, $88.5 billion for enhanced child tax credits, $87.7 billion for transportation and $21.6 billion for rental and utility assistance payments.
Much of this money was “printed” by the Federal Reserve buying the debt, flowing even more money into the nation’s economy. The amount of the national debt held by the Fed increased from $3.5 trillion prior to the pandemic to $6.1 trillion by the end of last year.
Last fall, Republicans universally opposed Biden’s $1.9 trillion Build Back Better proposal, both because the nation couldn’t afford it and it would be inflationary.
Democrat Sen. Joe Manchin of West Virginia agreed, and along with Sen. Krysten Sinema of Arizona blocked the legislation.
FedEx founder Fred Smith told The Wall Street Journal in a story publish last week had Build Back Better passed, the U.S. would be experiencing the hyperinflation Germany did in the years following World War I.
“Had we passed the Build Back Better bill that Biden wanted, my guess is that we would be Weimar, Germany right now,” he said. “We’d have 25 percent inflation rather than 9 percent or 10 percent.”
Manchin and Sinema were “like the Dutch kid with the finger in the dike,” Smith argued.
So the Republicans’ plan was to not overstimulate the economy, because it was already well on its way to recovery.
The month before the passage of the American Rescue Plan, the unemployment rate had fallen from a pandemic high of 14.7 percent in April 2020 to 6.2 percent.
After the gross domestic product fell approximately 31 percent in the second quarter of 2020, it rebounded nearly 34 percent during the third quarter and has remained in positive territory since.
The pro-economic growth tax policies the Republicans instituted while Trump was in office were working as designed.
The other aspect of the Republican plan was keeping Trump’s pro-energy development policies in place.
Under his leadership, the U.S. became the top oil producer in the world in 2018 — for the first time since 1973.
Market watchers have also blamed inflation, in part, on Biden’s energy policies.
In the early days of Biden’s presidency, he signed executive orders under the auspices of addressing climate change that included suspending oil and gas exploration leasing on federal lands and reinstating an Obama-era carbon dioxide emission federal fee to oil-drilling operations, which had been lowered significantly under Trump.
Additionally, the Biden administration shut down oil exploration in the Arctic Wildlife Preserve, limited oil exploration in the National Petroleum Reserve in Alaska and canceled the Keystone XL Pipeline from Canada.
Now, the U.S. is producing over 1 million fewer barrels a day than at its pre-pandemic peak under Trump.
None-the-less, Biden continued to blame Putin in a Wednesday tweet.
Putin’s invasion of Ukraine has driven up gas prices and food prices all over the world. We saw that in the most recent inflation data. Last month, about 70% of the increase in inflation was a consequence of Putin’s price hike because of the impact on gas and other energy prices.
— President Biden (@POTUS) April 20, 2022
Last month, Republicans introduced the American Energy Independence from Russia Act.
Among other provisions, it would immediately approve the Keystone XL pipeline and restart oil and gas leasing program on federal lands and waters.
Psaki and the Democrats say Republicans have no plan to address inflation.
The GOP plan is to do pretty much the exact opposite economically of what the Democrats have done.