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Dems need to undermine Trump’s claims for the booming economy.


There are many things I’m looking for in the Democratic candidate for president next year, but one of the most important is the ability to take the punches Trump will give, and to return those punches hard, fast and devastatingly. The candidates I’ve seen so far that best stand up to Trump’s insults and bullying are Mayor Pete, Elizabeth Warren and, surprisingly, Joe Biden, who delivered a knockout speech the other day in Iowa. While he laid out few policy specifics, he reserved his heaviest attacks to date against Trump’s character, in a way that suggests more is to come. That, in my opinion, is absolutely necessary for any Democrat to win: we have to remind voters that, even though they may agree with Trump on some issues, they know that his morality is non-existent. He’s an awful, degraded human being, who degrades the presidency and the entire country with his degeneracy.

There’s another thing I want to see the Democratic candidate do, and so far, I don’t see anyone doing it: refute Trump’s claims that he gets the credit for the booming economy. Although most commentators seem to accept this as fact, it’s simply not true. It infuriates me that the media let him get away with it. The plain and simple fact of the matter is that the economic recovery began in the late winter of 2009—in other words, less than a year into Barack Obama’s presidency—and continues to this day.

After the Great Recession of 2008 (which we can call the Bush Recession), the Dow Jones Industrial Average began a precipitous rise in December, 2009, and continues rising to this day. Trump had nothing to do with that; indeed, the rise continues despite him. Then there’s the unemployment rate, which similarly began a sharp decline in December, 2009, and that also continues to this day. The recovery thus began in December 2009, when Obama had been in office barely a year. It can legitimately be called the Obama Recovery.

Trump cannot legitimately take credit for these things. He will, anyway; another lie. The economy is the only thing he’ll have going for him in the campaign (assuming it hasn’t tanked by then). If Democrats can neutralize that braggadocio, we’ll go a long way to retaking the White House.

Every time a Democrat gives a speech, engages in debate or has a press conference, he or she should come prepared with this information, preferably in graphic form. Democrats should repeat the mantra over, and over, and over: The Obama Recovery began in 2009. Trump, a good brander, knows the value of repetition: “No collusion, no obstruction.” Democrats need to do the same thing: repeat as often as necessary. The Obama Recovery. The Obama Recovery.Prove demonstratively that Trump is once again lying. The public is pre-conditioned to assume that Trump lies already: this would just confirm it.

If Trump no longer has the economy to brag about, he has nothing with which to appeal to independents (if there are any left) or wavering Republicans concerned about the character of their leader. Immigration is not a winning issue for most people: both sides are settled into their respective corners. Foreign affairs (never the most important thing to voters) are a mess: North Korea continues to have nukes, we’ve alienated our allies in Europe, war in Iran is a constant threat. Trump might wag the dog and bomb Iran, but I strongly believe that most Americans will see this as an act of desperation on his part, and one, moreover, that costs the lives of American fighters.

With the polls showing Trump losing decisively to almost any Democrat, we’ve got to start hammering away at Trump’s claims for the economy; and we’ve got to start now.

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