June 26 2014

Obama Spinners Put Happy Face on Dismal Economic News

Charlotte Hays

Remember how during the 2012 presidential campaign President Obama urged voters to stick with him because the economy was on the cusp of a real recovery?

And I just found this headline on a political item in the Washington Post from 2009: “Obama Cautiously Takes Credit for Economic Turnaround.”

But he is not taking credit for this, cautiously or othrwise:

The U.S. economy turned in its worst quarter in five years during the first three months of 2014, shrinking more sharply than previously estimated.

The nation's gross domestic product in the first quarter fell at a 2.9% annual rate, vs. the 1% contraction previously believed, the Commerce Department said Wednesday. Economists surveyed by Bloomberg expected a 1.8% drop in output from the fourth quarter.

The decline was the sharpest since growth tumbled 5.4% in the first quarter of 2009, during the Great Recession. It was also one of the worst falloffs outside of a recession since 1960.

The last time the economy shrank was in the first quarter of 2011, almost two years after the 2007-2009 recession ended, when it slipped 1.3%.

This is grim news that is best faced. But Obama apologists prefer to spin it. Sean Davis has a great piece over at The Federalist on the spinners.

A normal observer would look at that number and be disappointed, given that it was posted nearly 5 years into an alleged economic recovery. The leftist online illiterati, however, is decidedly abnormal.

Pro-Obama spinners see the dismal 2.9 decline as somehow okay and indeed as a positive effect of ObamaCare. Davis culled some great spin efforts:

ThinkProgress: Health care spending is on the rise, and that’s a good thing

HuffPostBiz: ObamaCare just saved the U.S. economy from contraction

Sara Kliff: That time when health care spending went down and people got sad about it.

Davis concludes:

That’s a great point, Sarah. It’s like that time Mary Todd Lincoln was treated to a really delightful little rendition of “Our American Cousin” but for some reason wouldn’t shut up about that man who made a mess of things in the balcony. What a drama queen.

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