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Fox News White House correspondent Peter Doocy and Press Secretary Karine Jean-Pierre engaged in another epic exchange during a briefing on Monday.
Specifically, Jean-Pierre appeared to stumble when trying to answer direct questions regarding the most recent inflation figures and what President Joe Biden and his administration are doing to provide more economic relief to Americans who have been suffering through inflation at 40-year highs for months.
Doocy asked the press secretary a series of questions, beginning with why, if Biden really believed that battling inflation is his top domestic priority, Americans have not seen much progress on that front at all.
“Following up on something you said earlier, if President Biden’s top domestic priority is inflation, why doesn’t he have more to show for it?” Doocy asked.
“So, the president understands, and we’ve talked about this many times, that inflation is an issue … high cost … cost is an issue for the American people, and so he’s been very clear about making that his number one economic priority. And he has done the work,” Jean-Pierre claimed.
She then pivoted to praise for the Inflation Reduction Act, saying that it was “going to lower costs” for senior citizens around the country by putting caps on Medicare prescription drug costs while throwing shade at Republicans who did not vote for the measure because they did not believe it would actually reduce inflation. Jean-Pierre then said that the GOP would move to repeal the act if they could and argued doing so would only “make things worse.”
Doocy followed that exchange up by asking: “But who exactly thinks the president is doing a good job on inflation? Because we’ve got a poll that finds he receives his lowest job ratings on inflation, net negative 38 points.”
“We understand that there are challenges that are in front of us here in this country, that is why the president has taken action to lower costs,” Jean-Pierre argued, going on to mention the price of gas as one example, though in recent days, prices have been rising again around the country.
DOOCY TIME: “[I]f [Biden’s] top domestic priority is inflation, why doesn’t he have more to show for it?”
KJP: “So, [he] understands…inflation is an issue…Cost is an issue for the American people, and so he’s been very clear about making that his #1 economic priority” pic.twitter.com/jmJXsfAjMQ
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) October 17, 2022
Doocy: “Have [Biden’s] economic advisors told him the general consensus now is that the American Rescue Plan has contributed to inflation?”
KJP: “Look, Sec. Yellen, who is incredibly well respected…has spoken to this…[His policies] are popular w/the American people.” pic.twitter.com/LXLEaymw0Q
— Curtis Houck (@CurtisHouck) October 17, 2022
“Have the president’s economic advisors told him the general consensus now is that the American Rescue Plan has contributed to inflation?” Doocy pressed further.
Jean-Pierre tried to argue that Biden’s policies are actually popular with Americans while deflecting on the economic question: “Look, Sec. Yellen, who is incredibly well respected, as you know, in the economic space, has spoken to this, so I will leave her words speak to that, to the statement that you just made.”
Biden and, by default the Democratic Party he presides over, are getting the lion’s share of the blame for the country’s worsening inflation.
Just weeks out from the November midterm elections, according to a new survey from CBS News, Republicans are likely to retake control of at least the House as a majority of respondents blamed higher prices on Biden.
“The CBS/YouGov Battleground Tracker poll surveyed 2068 registered voters between October 12th and 14th, asking a number of questions about the upcoming elections, the overall state of the economy, and whether or not they were satisfied with the direction the country was heading,” The Daily Wire reported, citing the outlet’s survey data.
“The worst news for Democrats came from the questions about the economy, as 65% of those polled said that they felt like the United States economy was getting worse compared to only 15% who believed it was getting better. Another 20% said that the economy was staying the same,” The Daily Wire added.
Gas prices have begun rising again in many parts of the country, and that’s not helping Democrats or Biden, either, as 63 percent of those surveyed said they see increases again, while just 13 percent said fuel prices were falling where they live. In August, by comparison, 53 percent said prices were tumbling, and just 16 percent said they were rising.
Democrats were also getting most of the blame. The survey found that nearly half — 48 percent — said Democrats and Democratic policies were to blame for the inflationary economy, while fewer than one-third, or 29 percent, said Dem policies were helping. Meanwhile, more than two-thirds, or 68 percent, said Biden could be doing more to combat inflation, while just 29 percent said he was already doing what he could.
GOP operative Nathan Brand tweeted out some of the survey’s results: “NEW CBS Poll: Voters hold Biden responsible for the state of the economy. 71% say he bears a lot or some responsibility for an economy that 65% of voters say is getting worse.”