In the comments section of a previous post about the economy (yesterday we had good news- today we get bad employment news), it was stated that Bush was never accused of talking down the economy after being elected (yes- he was elected) in 2000. One more time, let’s go through one of the most idiotic charge the Democrats have ever made about Bush.
After being elected on a platform of tax cuts, Bush started to note that not only were Americans overtaxed in these times of huge budget surpluses, but that the bubble had burst, the glow was off the economy and had been for a while, and that tax cuts might be necessary to serve as a stimulus:
Mr Bush has said he sees “warning signs of a possible slow-down”, and has proposed tax cuts of $1.3 trillion over a 10-year period.
“I believe strongly that tax relief is part of the prescription for any economic ill that our nation may have,” he said.
Democrats responded with all the sound and fury that they could muster on an issue as horrifying to them as tax cuts (too bad Hussein didn’t try to cut taxes in Iraq- we might have even had Kucinich and Pelosi onboard), and claimed that Bush was talking down the economy for partisan gain:
On Thursday, US Treasury Secretary Lawrence Summers (ed.- under Clinton) rejected bleak Republican predictions, saying the economy was “healthy and poised for moderate growth”.
President-elect Bush and his team are actually talking down our economy, (and) injecting more fear and anxiety
His remarks followed accusations made by Democrats and economists that Mr Bush and his staff were attempting to “talk down” the economy for political ends.
Some commentators suggest Mr Bush is seeking to bolster the case for his proposed $1.3 trillion tax cut and to pin the blame for any further economic downturn firmly on the outgoing administration.
“What you’re seeing is President-elect Bush and his team actually talking down our economy, (and) injecting more fear and anxiety into the economy than is justified,” said Gene Sperling, an economic advisor to President Clinton.
Newsmax had this coverage:
The Clinton White House on Thursday warned President-elect Bush to watch what he says about a possible economic downturn because such statements might become a self-fulfilling prophecy.
The White House claimed that most experts predict solid but modest growth and not a recession.
“When most experts are still projecting solid growth and a soft landing, a new president should not be hurting confidence by talking down his economy,” White House National Economic Adviser Gene Sperling said…
“It is important to be guarded and measured in what you say about the economy,” White House Press Secretary Jake Siewart said Thursday. Siewart said that most analysts agreed the economy would grow by around 2.5 percent next year and that statements to the contrary could be detrimental.
“It is important for an economic team that is part of the government to be careful about what they say,” Siewart said. “People take these comments very seriously.”
White House officials said privately that Bush was trying to lower expectations on the economy