Last week, CPI data released by the Labor Department shows inflation is running rampant. The Consumer Price Index surged 8.3% since last year — surpassing economist expectations — and remains around a forty-year high. To top it off, gas prices also hit a new high this week, at $4.43 per gallon.
This means that the majority of Americans who cite inflation as a “hardship” get no respite. Last month, hourly wages fell 2.6% when adjusted for inflation. Everything, from a carton of eggs (+22.6%) to a used car (+22.7%), costs more. American families already struggling with stretched budgets can’t afford these skyrocketing prices. Inflation is costing the average American family $569 per month, and 88% of Americans say high gas prices are a problem for their families. Even when shopping, “shrinkflation” is giving them less bang for their buck.
It’s no wonder President Joe Biden took the big step of giving a supposed “major speech on inflation” last week. The problem of inflation has become politically impossible to ignore. Poll after poll shows it will be a top voter issue in midterm elections, and poll after poll shows Americans overwhelmingly blame Mr. Biden and Democrat policies.
Thus, you’d think Mr. Biden would put forward some serious solutions. Instead, he used ridiculous platitudes, verbal theatrics, and dumbed-down false choices. He said our economy has gone from “being on the mend to the move.” Our economy shrank last quarter. Then he said there are two leading causes of inflation: the pandemic, and now Putin’s war in Ukraine. But even liberal economists agree Democrats’ $1.9 trillion “stimulus” fueled inflation and was an “extraordinary policy mistake.” Moreover, gas prices were rising long before Putin invaded Ukraine as Mr. Biden and Democrats waged war on American energy.
To fight inflation, Mr. Biden said there are “two potential paths forward.” The first, he said, is the Democrats’ radical spending agenda. Then there is the “Republican plan.” But the Republican “plan” Mr. Biden is referring to is just a debunked lie that Republicans in Congress want to raise taxes. That false claim earned “Three Pinocchios (barely missing Four)” from The Washington Post. What, then, does that leave us with? Mr. Biden’s plan. It would raise taxes and spend voraciously. Already, economists warn it would cut jobs, shrink the economy, and fuel further inflation. Mr. Biden’s budget alone proposes nearly $2.5 trillion in new or increased taxes.
By now Mr. Biden and Democrats are seasoned swindlers – and I’d venture to suggest Americans aren’t willing to buy a bill of false goods. In fact, many retirees are coming out of retirement due to Bidenflation. Remember that back in June, Biden downplayed Americans’ concerns about rising prices, saying inflation was going to “pop up a little bit then go back down.” And on exorbitantly high gas prices, it’s clear that his radical climate agenda is his top domestic priority. Otherwise, he’d increase American production. But he won’t. He said back on the campaign trail that there is “no middle ground” to his radical climate agenda.
In short, Mr. Biden’s “major speech on inflation” was rooted in lies and deception. Republican-led states, on the other hand, have consistently led in creating jobs and opportunities. The last time Republicans were in power, taxes were cut and real wages grew. Economic policy matters.
Meanwhile, two weeks ago at the White House Correspondents’ Dinner, Mr. Biden cracked up when presented with the not-so-funny fact that under his leadership, everything costs more. If the room were not full of Hollywood elites, but hardworking American families, he’d likely have been greeted with boos.
While Mr. Biden can – and does – laugh about the pain his policies have caused Americans, Democrats won’t laugh when they’re booted out of office in November. Mr. Biden and Democrats blame everyone else, but it’s their own outrageous spending and war on U.S. energy that caused this crisis.
- Tommy Hicks Jr. is the co-chair of the Republican National Committee