“Right now, I have the strongest record of growing manufacturing jobs in modern history.”
— President Biden, in a tweet, Sept. 10
Regular readers know we are often wary when a president proclaims success in creating jobs. Presidential decisions and new laws can certainly impact job creation — over time. But it is hard to disentangle the importance of those factors from broader economic forces that are beyond a president’s control.
That’s why it’s often misleading to measure job creation by presidential term — an artificial metric beloved by presidents and the public alike.
When we saw this tweet, we immediately thought “coronavirus.” The global pandemic that emerged early in 2020 destroyed millions of jobs, though some rehiring began almost immediately. Almost 1.4 million manufacturing jobs were lost from February to April, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, but then 233,000 were regained in May. By the time Biden took office in 2021, the number of…
This article was written by Glenn Kessler and originally published on www.washingtonpost.com