Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman debunks Trump’s bogus claims about the ‘Obama economy’

Nobel Laureate Paul Krugman debunks Trump’s bogus claims about the ‘Obama economy’
Image via CNN Screengrab.

President Donald Trump has repeatedly insisted that his policies alone are responsible for the economic recovery in the United States, claiming that he inherited a broken economy from his Democratic predecessor, President Barack Obama. But Trump’s claims are wildly misleading, and economist/New York Times columnist Paul Krugman debunked some of them this week in a Twitter thread.


Krugman tweeted, “So, I see that Trump is bad-mouthing the Obama economy. Two points. First, there was absolutely no break in economic trends after the 2016 election.”

The 66-year-old Krugman posted a chart showing GDP (gross domestic product) from 2010 (when Obama was serving his first term) to 2020 (three years into Trump’s presidency). GDP, the chart shows, gradually improved during Obama’s eight-year presidency.

In the same Twitter thread, Krugman asserted that when Obama was president, Republicans undermined the recovery with their emphasis on “austerity.”

“Second, while recovery from the financial crisis could and should have been faster,” Krugman writes, “the reason it wasn’t was Republican-enforced fiscal austerity.”

Krugman explained, “Without that austerity — suddenly abandoned when Trump took office — unemployment would probably have fallen to 4% by some point in 2014.”

In October 2009, the unemployment rate in the U.S. reached 10.2%, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). But in December 2016, Obama’s last full month in office, it was down to 4.7%.

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