- The Washington Times - Monday, May 11, 2020

White House trade adviser Peter Navarro on Monday dismissed what he described as an economic “pity party” a day earlier and said the U.S. is not facing another Great Depression amid the coronavirus pandemic.

“This is not the Great Depression,” Mr. Navarro said on “Fox and Friends.” “Anybody who thinks this is the Great Depression doesn’t understand either history or economics.”

He acknowledged that people are “hurting” as COVID-19 wreaks havoc on the economy but said the virus is “temporarily” shutting things down.

“It’s going to be a long process because of the structural adjustments that are going to take place as we adapt to the virus socially and culturally and economically, but this Great Depression pity party stuff I saw yesterday - this ain’t that,” he said.

Mr. Navarro’s comments came after White House senior adviser Kevin Hassett and Treasury Secretary Steven T. Mnuchin warned on Sunday that more economic pain - including an unemployment rate potentially approaching 20% - is likely forthcoming in the short term.

“That was a pity party yesterday,” Mr. Navarro said.

The Labor Department had reported on Friday that the U.S. unemployment rate surged to 14.7% in April, the worst since the Great Depression.

• David Sherfinski can be reached at dsherfinski@washingtontimes.com.

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