NCPA - National Center for Policy Analysis


May 7, 2007

Years from now, pundits and academics will wonder why President Bush's greatest achievement -- his stewardship of the economy -- got so little notice during his time in office, says Investor's Business Daily (IBD).

Bizarrely, polls show that many people think the economy has fallen into a recession. Or that we never left the slump that began in 2001.  There's no question that 2001 was one of the largest hits ever to the wealth of Americans, but Bush did exactly the right thing to revive the economy by pushing through his tax cuts, says IBD.  The results:

  • Real gross domestic product has soared $1.64 trillion, or 16.5 percent, during a five-year stretch that has yet to see a downturn and that has witnessed average annual growth of 3 percent.
  • Disposable personal income has jumped $2.16 trillion, or 29 percent, to $9.68 trillion, productivity, the fuel for future standards of living, has improved 14.3 percent and overall employee compensation has expanded 4 percent a year.
  • Net wealth, the amount people would have after paying off their debts, has swelled $15.2 trillion, or 38 percent, to $55.6 trillion. That gain in just five years is more than the total wealth amassed in the first 210 years of America's existence -- an unprecedented surge.

In addition:

  • About 69 percent of Americans now own their homes, an all-time high.
  • The jobless rate, now at 4.4 percent, remains below its 40-year average. Since August 2003, 7.8 million new jobs have been created.
  • Tax receipts have surged 43 percent, or $757.6 billion, again thanks to economic growth.

Today, some signs point to slowing.  All the more reason to keep Bush's tax cuts, the engine of our prosperity, says IBD.  But the new Democrat-led Congress has threatened not just to roll back Bush's cuts, but to impose new taxes that would sink the economy.

Source: Editorial, "Bush's Real Record on the Economy," Investor's Business Daily, May 4, 2007.


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