How many articles have you read in the last year that begin with how much Trump likes to brag?
I’m guessing the answer is somewhere between “way too many” and “Oh God, I think I might vomit.” It’s only gotten worse since his inauguration. The newest things Trump loves to brag about are jobs and the economy. However, neither are considered indicators of Trump’s performance so far as president. He really wants you to think they are, though.
As Trump withdrew the United States from the Paris Climate Agreement, his speech turned ridiculous right away. He claimed, impossibly, that “we” (meaning his administration) had added “more than a million private sector jobs.” This is false, even by the metric that Trump himself uses. According to estimates from ADP, the payroll company, the US added 1.2 million jobs since January of this year. However, Trump was in office less than two weeks in January. Any residual job additions or losses from the previous administration last for months after a president leaves office.
More importantly, the ADP numbers are only an estimate, because they rely on only the 24 million workers whose paychecks they process. That number accounts for just under sixteen percent of all employed Americans.
But why rely on ADP numbers to begin with? The US Bureau of Labor Statistics handles the official jobs reports that detail employment numbers. The problem is, their numbers include public sector work as well. And they don’t just count jobs added, they subtract jobs lost. That’s an issue for small-government Republicans, who love to freeze hiring or even close offices in the public sector. Trump has done both of those things.
As always, Trump is trying to take credit for things that were underway well before he took office, especially jobs.
But we can’t ever let him forget that his bragging is nothing more than words.
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