Monday marked the 11-year anniversary of the signing of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, commonly called the “stimulus package,” that helped put the U.S. economy back on track following the Great Recession.
To mark the occasion, former President Barack Obama sent out a tweet.
“Eleven years ago today [Monday], near the bottom of the worst recession in generations, I signed the Recovery Act, paving the way for more than a decade of economic growth and the longest streak of job creation in American history,” Obama wrote.
He included an image of the act with his signature on it:
Eleven years ago today, near the bottom of the worst recession in generations, I signed the Recovery Act, paving the way for more than a decade of economic growth and the longest streak of job creation in American history. pic.twitter.com/BmdXrxUAUf
— Barack Obama (@BarackObama) February 17, 2020
The Recovery Act seemingly did exactly what it sought out to do — there have been 127 continuous months of economic growth (still ongoing) since it was signed into law, and the trend of hundreds of thousands of jobs being lost each month was reversed. The $831 billion spending package appeared to stimulate the economy.
But President Donald Trump doesn’t see things that way.
Trump took a swipe at Obama’s tweet on Monday (which, coincidentally was Presidents’ Day), arguing that the former president was trying to steal his thunder.
“Did you hear the latest con job? President Obama is now trying to take credit for the Economic Boom taking place under the Trump Administration,” Trump wrote.
Did you hear the latest con job? President Obama is now trying to take credit for the Economic Boom taking place under the Trump Administration. He had the WEAKEST recovery since the Great Depression, despite Zero Fed Rate & MASSIVE quantitative easing. NOW, best jobs numbers….
— Donald J. Trump (@realDonaldTrump) February 17, 2020
Trump also said that Obama’s economic recovery was “the WEAKEST recovery since the Great Depression.”
While technically true, Trump’s words don’t take into account the fact that the Great Recession, which started before Obama took office, was the worst one seen since the Depression as well.
Furthermore, most economists agree: the “economic boom” that Trump alludes to actually started under Obama’s watch.
After the president claimed in his State of the Union Address this year that the “Great American Comeback” was happening because of his policies, many fact-checking websites noted that, absent from Trump’s claim was the fact that the current president started out in a pretty decent place, economically speaking, thanks to his predecessor.
Indeed, things aren’t even recovering at the same pace as they once did. Reporting from Forbes noted that the last three years of Obama’s economy were stronger than the first three years of Trump’s time in office.