The Corner

The Economy

Biden: Today’s High Inflation Numbers Show We Have to Pass Build Back Better

President Joe Biden delivers remarks on the November jobs report at the White House in Washington, D.C., December 3, 2021. (Kevin Lamarque/Reuters)

Today President Biden contended that inflation hitting the highest level in 39 years meant that the federal government needs to spend a lot more money:

We are making progress on pandemic related challenges to our supply chain which make it more expensive to get goods on shelves, and I expect more progress on that in the weeks ahead.

Finally, the challenge of prices underscores the importance that Congress move without delay to pass my Build Back Better plan, which lowers how much families pay for health care, prescription drugs, child care, and more.

You may recall that back on July 19, Biden declared:

We also know that as our economy has come roaring back, we’ve seen some price increases. Some folks have raised worries that this could be a sign of persistent inflation.  But that’s not our view. Our experts believe and the data shows that most of the price increases we’ve seen are — were expected and expected to be temporary… Now, I want to be clear: My administration understands that if we were to ever experience unchecked inflation over the long term that would pose real challenges to our economy.  So while we’re confident that isn’t what we are seeing today, we’re going to remain vigilant about any response that is needed.

And later that day speaking with reporters:

Q    Yes, thank you, Mr. President.  At what point would you consider inflation unchecked to a point at which you would either consider taking action or you would want to see the Fed take action?

THE PRESIDENT:  Yeah.  There’s nobody suggesting there’s unchecked inflation on the way — no serious economist.  That’s totally different.

November was the sixth straight month in which inflation has surged more than 5 percent, year over year.

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