White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre on Tuesday repeated the false claim that President Joe Biden’s administration is responsible for lowering the federal budget deficit.
During an appearance on “Morning Joe,” the press secretary reiterated the White House’s misleading claim that the administration deserves credit for reducing the deficit by $1.7 trillion.
About 80% of the deficit reduction occurred due to the expiration of federal COVID-19 stimulus checks, while 20% is related to changes to the economy and higher tax revenue due to inflation, according to Check Your Fact.
“There is lowering the deficit, and that’s where the president has said, ‘Okay, I’ve been able to do it in a historic fashion.’ $1.7 trillion that he has been able to lower the deficit in the last two years. He’s willing to have a conversation in good faith to continue to lower the deficit,” Jean-Pierre said. “The president was very clear last week, he said, ‘Ok, on March 9, I’m gonna put forth my budget plan for fiscal year 2024. What is going to be the Republicans’ plan? What are they putting forward?’ Right now, as I mentioned earlier, we’re hearing about cutting Social Security, we’re hearing about cutting Medicare, but they haven’t put anything on paper yet.”
“What does that look like if we’re going to have a real conversation on having fiscal responsibility?” Jean-Pierre concluded.
House Republicans have denied accusations that the want to cut Social Security and Medicare. GOP House Speaker Kevin McCarthy told “Face the Nation” on Jan. 29 that any proposals to slash funding for either program are “off the table.” (RELATED: White House Sends Out Error-Laden Economy ‘Fact Sheet’ On Eve Of SOTU)
“Let’s take those completely off the table,” McCarthy said. “If you read our Commitment to America, all we talk about is strengthening Medicare and Social Security. I know the president says he doesn’t want to look at it, but we have to make sure we strengthen those.”
The White House released a economic “fact sheet” Monday, one day before the scheduled State of the Union address. Aside from the deficit claims, the Biden administration claimed credit for a “manufacturing boom.”
This “boom” mostly stems from the reopening of the economy after the COVID-19 pandemic. Prior to the pandemic, U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics data showed 12.785 million manufacturing jobs. These numbers dropped to 11.414 million at the height of the pandemic in April of 2020, and rose back to 12.999 million in January 2023, according to the BLS.