White House economic advisor Lael Brainard responded to negative polls on the economy by stating it is performing “exceptionally well” despite challenging years between the pandemic and war in Ukraine. But she said it may take time for people to regain confidence.
In a CNBC interview Monday, Brainard was asked about Biden’s economic standing compared to former President Trump in light of recent surveys. She maintained the statistics show strong growth, low unemployment and rising incomes under Biden.
Brainard argued Biden has the best economic record globally, with faster growth and lower inflation than other advanced economies. She cited 3% GDP growth over the past year and unemployment staying below 4% for 21 consecutive months.
However, Brainard acknowledged many have faced tough challenges between COVID-19 and energy price hikes from the Russia-Ukraine war. She said it will take time for people to feel fully secure again, though currently 70% say finances are better than before Biden.
When pressed on negative perceptions, Brainard stuck to her stance that the overall data remains positive. She believes Americans like Biden’s policies on issues like lowering insulin, drug prices and protecting Social Security, but confidence may trail the statistics.
Brainard highlighted expert forecasts from last year that attaining today’s lower inflation would require 4.5% unemployment and no economic growth over the past year. In her view, the economy is exceeding expectations.
She argues that both the administration’s policies and economic track record are strong, despite consumer unease. Brainard contends Biden’s agenda around healthcare, taxes and other kitchen table issues resonates, even if personal financial security remains elusive for many right now.
The White House adviser insists the numbers paint a picture of exceptional economic performance under Biden, regardless of negative sentiment in surveys. She maintains high growth and low joblessness are overriding realities, with policies favored by the public.
Brainard seems to believe communication and public mindset simply haven’t caught up to the positive economic fundamentals and the administration’s popular agenda. Time will tell if that perspective shifts as the 2024 race comes more clearly into focus.