Fact checkers target Biden for ‘false and misleading’ statements on economy
President Biden is facing a backlash from fact-checkers following a recent speech he gave in Virginia regarding the economic progress his administration has made during his tenure in the White House.
Speaking Thursday at Steamfitters Local 602 in Springfield, Biden made multiple statements about the current state of the economy that have fact-checkers — both from CNN and the House Ways and Means Committee — ringing bells. the alarm.
Following his remarks, CNN reporter Daniel Dale, who works to verify the outlet’s political claims, accused Biden of making “false and misleading allegations.”
“Some of Biden’s assertions in the speech were untrue, misleading, or lacked critical context, although others were correct,” Dale wrote in an article examining Biden’s remarks.
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Top of Dale’s list of fact checks was Biden’s claim that his administration had ‘funded 700,000 major construction projects – 700,000 across America’, which the White House admitted is not the case.
“Biden’s ‘700,000’ number is wildly inaccurate; it adds two extra zeros to the correct number that Biden used in a speech last week and the White House has also used before: 7,000 drafts,” Dale wrote, noting that the White House changed Biden’s figure. speech transcript to reflect the exact number.
Dale also took aim at Biden for his claim that “only 3.5 million people had been — even had their first vaccination” when former President Donald Trump left office in January 2021.
The actual number of people who had received their first COVID-19 vaccine when Trump left office in January 2021 was about 19 million, according to data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. The figure of 3.5 million refers to those who had been shot twice.
Biden has also come under scrutiny from CNN for his assertion that billionaires “practically only pay 3% of their income now – 3% they pay,” a comment that was later pushed back. by the White House.
“Biden’s ‘3%’ claim is incorrect. For the second time in less than a week, Biden has misrepresented a 2021 finding by economists in his administration that the top 400 billionaire families were paying an average of 8.2% of their income in federal individual income taxes between 2010 and 2018,” Dale wrote. “After CNN inquired about Biden’s ‘3%’ claim on Thursday, the White House released a corrected official transcript that uses ‘8%’ instead.”
Highlighting Biden’s comments on the federal debt under Trump and how his administration “cut the deficit by $1.7 trillion, the largest debt reduction in American history,” Dale insisted on the makes it “highly questionable” how much credit Biden deserves.
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“Biden’s bragging leaves out important context. It’s true that the federal deficit has shrunk by a total of $1.7 trillion under Biden in fiscal years 2021 and 2022, including a record drop of 1, $4 trillion in 2022 – but it’s highly questionable how much credit Biden deserves for this cut,” Dale wrote. “Biden did not mention that the primary reason the deficit fell so substantially was that it had an all-time high under Trump in 2020 due to bipartisan pandemic emergency relief spending, then fell as expected as spending expired as scheduled. Independent analysts say Biden’s own actions, including laws and executive orders, have had the overall effect of increasing current and future deficits, not reducing those deficits. »
In addition to CNN, Republicans on the House Ways and Means Committee targeted Biden’s remarks Thursday with a fact check, saying the president “didn’t let the facts get in the way of his Springfield speech.”
“While Biden has claimed the economy is getting stronger, the latest economic growth report reveals that the economy under his administration’s policies has fallen short of expectations in seven of the last eight economic growth reports,” wrote the committee. “In fact, all of 2022 has been worse for economic growth than expected. And even more trouble lies ahead, according to the latest report from the Leading Economic Index.”
Listing five recent “misleading” claims by the president that the committee has criticized, Republicans wrote: “President Biden has made inaccurate accusations about Republicans and scares people to scare the elderly when Republicans have been clear, we don’t ‘let’s not touch their retirement security. Biden has also made Medicare and Social Security worse – without protecting them. Medicare premiums have risen for the elderly since 2020, while the crisis of Biden’s continued inflation pushed Social Security further toward insolvency.
Biden recently came under criticism from FactCheck.org over claims he made about unemployment during his speech at the winter meeting of the United States Conference of Mayors last week.
During the speech, according to FactCheck.org, Biden “botched a statistic on the number of people receiving unemployment benefits, misidentifying them simply as the number of ‘unemployed’ people.”
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“His comment leaves the false impression that unemployment fell by more than 16 million people under his watch, when the drop was actually less than 5 million,” the nonprofit website concluded. “And one of the main reasons for the sharp decline in unemployment benefits is the expiration of the pandemic-related extensions of these benefits.”
“Two years ago this week, 18 million people were out of work – two years ago this week,” Biden told the conference. “Now the – that number is below 1.6 million, near the lowest level in decades.”
“The White House transcript notes that the line drew applause,” FactCheck.org said. “But that’s not accurate. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the number of ‘unemployed’ – or officially unemployed – people in the United States in January 2021 was about 10.2 million, and the number in December 2022 was 5.7 million.”