Fact check: Biden makes false claim about former Federal Reserve leaders, revives misleading jobs claim

  

Category:  News & Politics

Via:  expatingb  •  7 months ago  •  18 comments

Fact check: Biden makes false claim about former Federal Reserve leaders, revives misleading jobs claim
not five former leaders of the Federal Reserve; only three past chairs of the Federal Reserve are even alive.


not five former leaders of the Federal Reserve; only three past chairs of the Federal Reserve are even alive.

Is Joe speaking with the dead now?


S E E D E D   C O N T E N T



President Joe Biden   claimed   last Wednesday that the last five leaders of the Federal Reserve had declared that his American Jobs Plan proposal will increase economic growth.

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© Patrick Semansky/AP   President Joe Biden speaks about the April jobs report in the East Room of the White House, Friday, May 7, 2021, in Washington. (AP Photo/Patrick Semansky)

The American Jobs Plan, which you can read about   here , would spend roughly $2 trillion on infrastructure projects and other initiatives. Biden has proposed to pay for the spending by increasing the statutory corporate tax rate from 21% to 28% and to make a   variety of other tax changes , including a major increase in tax enforcement against corporations.

"And, by the way, you saw -- you know, the -- the last five leaders of the Fed coming out and saying -- what'd they say? They said, 'Biden's plan is going to grow the economy,'" Biden said in his Wednesday speech at the White House.

Facts First :   Biden's claim is false. As a White House official acknowledged to CNN when we sought comment on Monday, Biden was inaccurately referring to an opinion   article   published in the Washington Post that day by five former leaders of the Internal Revenue Service, not five former leaders of the Federal Reserve; only three past chairs of the Federal Reserve are even alive. The former IRS commissioners did not say anything about how Biden's plan would affect economic growth. Rather, they said Biden's proposals -- including a   well-funded effort to crack down on the non-payment of taxes owed   -- would make the tax administration system "far fairer and more effective" and "produce a great deal of revenue by reducing the enormous gap between taxes legally owed and taxes actually paid."

Even if this was an accidental mix-up by Biden, it was a substantial mix-up. A positive economic forecast from former tax chiefs is almost certainly less likely to sound impressive to the public than a positive economic forecast from people who ran the US central bank and are among the nation's best-known economic figures. And, again, there was no economic forecast at all in the tax chiefs' article.

The most recent past leader of the Fed, Janet Yellen, is now Biden's Treasury Secretary. Her predecessor, Ben Bernanke, now a   distinguished fellow at the Brookings Institution   think tank, said in an email to CNN on Monday: "I have not made any public remarks on the infrastructure plan, so far as I can recall." The other living past Fed chair, Alan Greenspan, has also not weighed in on the plan; he could not immediately be reached for comment on Monday.

An exaggeration on the pay gap between CEOs and workers


Biden claimed in a   speech   in Louisiana on Thursday that "it used to be that a corporate CEO got paid 36 times as much as the average employee in their corporation in the Fortune 500; now, it's 456 times." He made a similar claim at the White House the day prior,   saying   that the average CEO of Fortune 500 companies now makes "over 450 times" what the average employee makes.

Facts First :   Biden's "456 times" figure was wrong based on the most recent available data, as the White House official acknowledged to CNN on Monday -- though he was broadly correct that the gap between CEO pay and worker pay has skyrocketed over time. The Economic Policy Institute, a progressive think tank,   found   that in 2019, CEOs of the 350 US companies with the largest sales earned 320 times more than the typical worker at those companies, not 456 times. Biden was in the ballpark on the situation in decades past; the same think tank found that there was a 21-to-1 ratio between CEO and worker pay in 1965 and about a 31-to-1 ratio in 1978.

As the White House official noted on Monday, Biden accurately cited the Economic Policy Institute figure in his late-April address to Congress,   saying then : "According to one study, CEOs make 320 times what the average worker in their corporation makes. It used to be in the -- below a hundred."

A misleading jobs claim is back


On May 2, we   pointed out   that, after early-April fact checks from   CNN   and others, Biden's team had stopped wrongly claiming or suggesting that economic firm Moody's Analytics found that the American Jobs Plan proposal would create 19 million jobs.

Well, Biden made a version of the claim last week. In a slightly different form than the original, but that new form was misleading too -- and Biden added an additional inaccuracy this time.

In his Thursday   speech   in Louisiana, Biden said, "All the economists, including the liberal as well as conservative think tanks, point out what we'll create when we pass this Jobs Plan -- we'll create up to 16 million good-paying jobs." And in the White House speech the day prior, Biden said, "You have Moody's talking about increasing it up to -- I don't know what the most recent one is -- 16 million new jobs."

Facts First :   Biden was wrong when he suggested in Louisiana that liberal and conservative economists and think tanks all agree that the American Jobs Plan will create up to 16 million jobs; there is no consensus of any kind on how many jobs the plan will create. And contrary to Biden's suggestion at the White House, even Moody's did not say the plan would create up to 16 million jobs. Rather, Moody's   estimated   in May that the economy will create about 16.5 million jobs between the fourth quarter of 2020 and the fourth quarter of 2030 if the American Jobs Plan is not passed, or create about 19.2 million jobs if Biden's plan is passed. In other words, Moody's found that the passage of the American Jobs Plan would produce 2.7 million additional jobs, not up to 16 million.

In fairness, Biden didn't explicitly say that the American Jobs Plan itself would create up to 16 million jobs; he said in Louisiana that "we'll create" up to 16 million many jobs when the plan is passed. This is why we don't call this version of the claim flatly false. But as in April, when   Biden used a "19 million jobs" figure , the President's artful language last week led listeners toward an inaccurate conclusion -- Moody's says passing the Biden plan means 16 million more jobs! -- that is more favorable to him than the truth: Moody's says passing the Biden plan means 2.7 million more jobs.

Biden was more careful in his address to Congress in April. He   said   in that speech that the plan will create "millions" of jobs.

Not a consensus

It is obviously not true that "all the economists, including the liberal as well as conservative think tanks," have come to the same conclusion on the potential impact of the American Jobs Plan.

One example of the non-consensus: Michael Strain, director of economic policy studies at the American Enterprise Institute, a conservative think tank, told CNN on Monday that he thinks Biden's plan will not produce a net result of   any   additional jobs

Strain said it's good that Biden's plan aims to make long-term infrastructure improvements over a period of years rather than trying to give the economy a quick jolt through immediate spending on so-called "shovel-ready" projects. But Strain said that, because the economy is already likely to be at full employment over this extended time horizon, the number of additional jobs the Biden plan will create "is zero." The plan, Strain argued, is likely to merely shift jobs toward industries "favored by the infrastructure plan," such as clean energy, while shifting them away from other industries.

There's no need here to interrogate Strain's opinions. The point is that, clearly, not everyone across the political spectrum and economic spectrum shares the Moody's assessment that the plan will produce 2.7 million jobs by the end of 2030 -- let alone Biden's suggestion that it will produce up to 16 million jobs.

Another   analysis , by the firm S&P Global, also came to a different conclusion than Moody's. S&P did not look at the particulars of Biden's plan, but it estimated that a hypothetical $2.1 trillion in infrastructure spending -- more than Biden is proposing, whatever   definition   of "infrastructure" you use -- would result in a net 713,000 additional jobs by 2029. (The analysis found that there would be 2.3 million additional jobs by 2024 as infrastructure projects were completed, but that the jobs impact of the plan would decline later in the decade.)


Article is LOCKED by author/seeder
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exexpatnowinTX
Freshman Participates
1  seeder  exexpatnowinTX    7 months ago

My, my, my.

Even CNN is getting tired of the Biden "misspoke" lines.   The man is certainly in trouble when CNN is calling him on his BS.

 
 
 
Bob Nelson
Professor Expert
1.1  Bob Nelson  replied to  exexpatnowinTX @1    7 months ago

Great bio and avatar!

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
2  Tessylo    7 months ago

[removed]

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
3  Tessylo    7 months ago

President Biden is doing just fine!

 
 
 
evilgenius
Professor Guide
4  evilgenius    7 months ago
As a White House official acknowledged to CNN when we sought comment on Monday...

I wonder... will that WH official be voted off the Democrat Island? /s

 
 
 
exexpatnowinTX
Freshman Participates
4.1  seeder  exexpatnowinTX  replied to  evilgenius @4    7 months ago
I wonder... will that WH official be voted off the Democrat Island? /s

I wonder...  when will those WH officials decide that they're too embarrassed by Biden to defend him any longer?

 
 
 
evilgenius
Professor Guide
4.1.1  evilgenius  replied to  exexpatnowinTX @4.1    7 months ago

As long as others keep comparing ol' Joe with our previously nude emperor, I think never. 

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
4.1.2  JBB  replied to  exexpatnowinTX @4.1    7 months ago

You speak of our senior statesman, President Joseph Biden, as if he had not honorably served the nation as a US Senator and two term Vice President and he was not enjoying immense popularity. As if you consider him an enemy...

original

 
 
 
exexpatnowinTX
Freshman Participates
4.1.3  seeder  exexpatnowinTX  replied to  JBB @4.1.2    7 months ago
You speak of our senior statesman, President Joseph Biden, as if he had not honorably served the nation as a US Senator and two term Vice President and he was not enjoying immense popularity. As if you consider him an enemy...

I have to admit that he served as a US Senator and Vice President.   Honorably is debatable.  If you consider being responsible for one of the worst bills that ever happened, the Violent Crime Control and Law Enforcement Act of 1994 which was responsible for putting more Black Americans behind bars than any other legislation, yeah, he did a bang up job.

He's enjoying "immense popularity" because the administration is buying that popularity with tax money being tossed around like a drunk in a whore house.

He's not an enemy.  He's a senior citizen suffering elder abuse that the hands of the minions that others have picked to control him.

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
5  Tessylo    7 months ago

President Biden has absolutely nothing to be embarrassed about.

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
6  JBB    7 months ago

So Biden misspoke and referenced five former fed chairman when he meant IRS Directors? Big Whoop!

It does not alter the fact that the experts agree Biden's economic plan will grow the economy which is the point that remains the pertinent fact of the matter...

 
 
 
Tessylo
Professor Principal
6.1  Tessylo  replied to  JBB @6    7 months ago

All they have is these petty 'mis-speakings' while accepting over 30,000 of trumpturd lies.

 
 
 
exexpatnowinTX
Freshman Participates
6.2  seeder  exexpatnowinTX  replied to  JBB @6    7 months ago
Rhat does not alter the fact that the experts agree that Biden's economic plan will grow the economy. That was the point and that remains the pertinent fact of the matter...

The Biden "job plan" will create a staggering 2.7 million new jobs in TEN YEARS.  That's about 270,000 jobs per year at a cost of TWO TRILLION THREE HUNDRED BILLION DOLLARS.

Do you want me to do the math for you or can you do it yourself?

 
 
 
JBB
Professor Principal
6.2.1  JBB  replied to  exexpatnowinTX @6.2    7 months ago

No, I want to know your plan to rebuild our aging infrastructure and put Americans back to work at good paying jobs. So far as the American people know the gop has no good plans.

 
 
 
exexpatnowinTX
Freshman Participates
6.2.2  seeder  exexpatnowinTX  replied to  JBB @6.2.1    7 months ago
No, I want to know your plan to rebuild our aging infrastructure and put Americans to work at good paying jobs.

Can't do the math?  

As to what I would do, here's Joe's plan:

The proposal calls for more than $2 trillion to rebuild the nation's crumbling infrastructure including roads, bridges and airports, as well as spending on what the administration calls "care" infrastructure a focus on long-term care for the elderly and disabled:
  • $621 billion for infrastructure like roads, bridges, rails and airports, as well as electric vehicles

That's fine.  Bridges, tunnels, roads, airports, but WHY do you or I need to help anyone buy an electric vehicle?  (**I already have one on order for my wife when we return to the states this summer.)

  • $50 billion to improve infrastructure to withstand climate change

And just what improvements will that be that are not encompassed in the above roads, bridges, etc.?

  • $111 billion for replacing lead pipes and upgrading drinking water systems

That's fine to a point.  If it's a loan to the serving municipality.

  • $100 billion for broadband

Is the US Government going to be an ISP now?  Broadband is a private endeavor by business.   Other people have paid to have service delivered to them, what makes those lacking special?

  • $213 billion to build and update affordable housing

Since when is that infrastructure?

  • $100 billion would go toward building and upgrading public schools

What have they done with the hundreds of billions already received?

  • $400 billion for home and community care and industry workers

In other words buying union workers votes.  Nothing more.

  • $180 billion in spending in research and development

R&D for what exactly?  We've already had studies on the sex lives of tsetse flies and shrimp on treadmills I believe.

  • $300 billion for manufacturing including strengthening supply chains

And what will the US Government be manufacturing?  Or will the funds be for loans to private corporations?

  • $100 billion for workforce development

Excuse me, but that's what schools are actually for.  To educate our children and prepare them for the jobs they will be taking on graduation.
 
 
 
Bob Nelson
Professor Expert
6.2.3  Bob Nelson  replied to  JBB @6.2.1    7 months ago
the gop has no good plans

No plans at all.

oh wait... tax cuts for the rich!!!! 

 
 
 
exexpatnowinTX
Freshman Participates
6.2.4  seeder  exexpatnowinTX  replied to  Bob Nelson @6.2.3    7 months ago
No plans at all.

Quite the contrary.

Here's some reading material you might enjoy, although I doubt it.

Countering Biden, Senate Republicans Unveil Smaller $568 Billion Infrastructure Plan

 
 
 
exexpatnowinTX
Freshman Participates
7  seeder  exexpatnowinTX    7 months ago

I'd love to stay and banter with some, but it's time to shut down for the night.

I'll be back tomorrow to open it up if I'm able.  

 
 
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