Scott Statement on President Trump’s Absurd Victory Lap on the Release of GDP Growth Estimates

October 30, 2020
Press Release

As originally released by the Committee on Education & Labor

WASHINGTON, DC Chairman Robert C. “Bobby” Scott (VA-03) released the following statement after the Bureau of Economic Analysis released its estimates for third-quarter GDP growth.

“Yesterday, President Trump absurdly and misleadingly claimed that this quarter’s GDP growth was the ‘Biggest and Best in the History.’ In fact, this quarter only recovered less than two-thirds of the ground lost in the first two quarters of 2020. That includes the second quarter which was the worst on record, more than three times worse than the previous post-WWII record.  

“Many Americans are actually suffering. Nearly 1.1 million Americans filed new unemployment insurance or Pandemic Unemployment Assistance (PUA) claims just last week, far exceeding the record high number of unemployment claims posted by any previous president (695,000 unemployment insurance claims in October 1982, which precedes the creation of PUA). In fact, initial unemployment claims under President Trump for each of the last 32 consecutive weeks have exceeded such claims under any other president in the history of the program.  And sixteen times more Americans are receiving unemployment compensation today than at the same point just last year. In recent weeks, 22.7 million Americans will receive some form of unemployment compensation compared to just 1.4 million this time last year. 

“Earlier this year, an article in Forbes Magazine described President Trump’s claims of economic success as ‘obvious gaslighting.’  That article points out that not a single year of President Trump’s first three years of job growth exceeded any of President Obama’s last three years.  President Trump did not inherit an economy in distress — he followed a record of job grow that he failed to match even before he mishandled the pandemic. 

“Our economy cannot fully recover until we get the pandemic under control.  Unfortunately, COVID-19 cases are surging in nearly every single state, so it is clear the pandemic and its impact on our economy are far from over. That is why I am urging the President to come to grips with reality and follow science, not politics, to effectively and truthfully deal with the COVID-19 pandemic. And the president should heed Federal Reserve Chairman Powell’s advice and agree to House Democrats’ push for funding to both support Americans and crush the virus to avoid a much longer, deeper, and more painful economic downturn.”

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