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White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre faced backlash Monday for saying that “economic indicators … do not show that we are in a recession or even before a recession.”
Typically, two quarters of negative GDP growth indicate that the United States is in recession. This is the metric traditionally used as a red line to determine whether a recession exists. However, the White House has launched a host of officials to dispute the definition of recession.
At the White House press conference, Jean-Pierre was asked about President Biden’s statement that “we will not be in a recession.”
She responded, “So if you look at the economic indicators as the president laid out, if you look at the labor market, right now, we’re seeing historic unemployment. If you look at a low unemployment of 3.6 , the average number of jobs created is around 400 [thousand] allowed. These indicators do not show that we are in a recession or even before a recession.”
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White House press secretary Karine Jean-Pierre has stumbled frequently since taking over the podium when Jenn Psaki left the administration to join MSNBC.
A clip of his response was shared and mocked on Twitter.
“Let me help. Two quarters straight negative growth = recession. Here we are,” wrote Buzz Patterson, a conservative columnist.
“The Biden White House doesn’t want you to think GDP is an economic indicator,” wrote Townhall Editor-in-Chief Spencer Brown.
White House Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre speaks during the daily press briefing at the White House on June 6, 2022 in Washington, DC. (Photo by Kevin Dietsch/Getty Images)
Fox News contributor Guy Benson tweeted: “At this briefing, she refused to define ‘recession.’ Will she explain what a ‘pre-recession’ is, since she brought it up, or not?”
“Two consecutive quarters of negative GDP growth,” Fox News contributor Katie Pavlich said.
Senior city hall editor Matt Vespa called it a “pants-on-fire lie.”
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Inflation, driven in part by President Biden’s energy and COVID-19 spending policies and the Federal Reserve’s money printing, is at a 40-year high. Many are concerned that the Fed’s interest rate hikes, along with Biden’s energy policies, will push the US into a recession.
US Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre holds the daily press briefing at the White House in Washington, US on June 16, 2022.
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Biden’s approval rating is at an all-time low, with only 19% support from Hispanics. Experts speculate that this will hurt Democrats in the 2022 midterm elections.
Joe Silverstein is a production assistant at Fox News Digital.