Former President Trump said in an interview that aired Monday that he predicts the U.S. economy will crash and that he hopes it does so within the next year.
In the interview with Lou Dobbs, Trump, the current front-runner in the GOP presidential primary race, explained that, if he were elected again, he would not want to serve a term similar to President Hoover’s — who took office when the economy was stable but later oversaw the start of the Great Depression.
Trump railed against the economy but conceded that there were some good aspects of it and took credit for those successes.
“We have an economy that’s so fragile, and the only reason it’s running now is it’s running off the fumes of what we did,” Trump said. “It’s just running off the fumes.”
Trump added: “And when there’s a crash — I hope it’s going to be during this next 12 months because I don’t want to be Herbert Hoover. The one president I just don’t want to be, Herbert Hoover.”
The U.S. economy, however, has defied economists’ predictions and closed the 2023 year with high marks on a wide range of criteria: Inflation was down, job growth remained high, and the unemployment rate stayed low.
“What we’re seeing now I think we can describe as a soft landing, and my hope is that it will continue,” Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen said in an interview on CNN on Friday, shortly after the release of a surprisingly strong jobs report for December.
The U.S. added 216,000 jobs in the final month of 2023 and kept the unemployment rate at 3.7 percent, far exceeding the expectations of economists. The annual inflation rate also dropped from 9.1 percent, a four-decade high, in June 2022 to 3.1 percent in November, according to the Labor Department.
“The American people did it,” Yellen said. “The American people go to work every day, participate in the labor market, form new businesses. But President Biden has tried to create incentives that give Americans the tools they need to help this economy grow.”
The Biden campaign responded to Trump’s comments by quoting Biden at a campaign event a few days earlier.
“President Biden three days ago: ‘Donald Trump’s campaign is about him. Not America. Not you,’” the statement read on X, formerly Twitter.
Updated at 9:48.
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