CongressEconomyHot SheetTrump

Bennet smacks down Trump’s credit-taking on the economy

Author: Joey Bunch - September 13, 2018 - Updated: September 13, 2018

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Colorado Sen. Michael Bennet is old school when it comes to dollars and business sense, and Wednesday he lectured President Trump on economics from the floor of the U.S. Senate.

Bennet was a lawyer with a keen business mind until he made his fortune working deals for Denver billionaire Phil Anschutz`(owner of Colorado Politics), before he turned to public service as chief of staff for then-Mayor John Hickenlooper and Denver Public Schools superintendent before becoming a senator.

Sure, the economy is doing great, and that’s a good thing, Bennet said, but the work was done to get this economic engine humming under President Obama, while Trump spins all the credit in his own direction.

Michael Bennet
U.S. Sen. Michael Bennet of Colorado tackles President Trump’s credit-taking for the economy. (Photo via YouTube)

“If you only read the president’s Twitter feed, which I don’t recommend, you could be forgiven for believing that the economy was collapsing under President Obama but is now roaring back under his administration,” Bennet said in his 10-minute take-down for the federal record.

“As usual, the truth is not nearly as partisan. If we ignore the hyperbole and exaggeration and review the actual history, the trends are clear. The economy was shrinking and shedding jobs when President Obama took office. He stepped in and made difficult decisions.”

By looking at trends of Bennet’s choosing, the economy is actually slowing under Trump.

In the last 18 months of the Obama administration, private sector earnings grew 1.3 percent, Bennet said, citing figures from the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In the first 18 months of the Trump administration, pay grew 1.1 percent.

“Last week President Trump also said, ‘We have more people working today than at any point ever in our history,'” Bennet said on the Senate floor. “That’s true. But it has been true every month since May 2014. In fact, the private sector has added jobs for 102 months straight — the longest streak on record, and 80 percent of that streak during the Obama administration.”

In a well-written speech worth watching, Bennet tossed a good zinger toward the hyperbolic White House:

“I will give him this. President Trump did promise that he would ‘be the greatest jobs president God ever created.’ And you know what? He has been the greatest jobs president God ever created — since Barack Obama.”

Joey Bunch

Joey Bunch

Joey Bunch is the senior political correspondent for Colorado Politics. He has a 31-year career in journalism, including the last 15 in Colorado. He was part of the Denver Post team that won the Pulitzer Prize in 2013 and is a two-time Pulitzer finalist. His resume includes covering high school sports, the environment, the casino industry and civil rights in the South, as well as a short stint at CNN.