Yesterday, the St. Cloud Times published my LTE about how the Trump/GOP tax cuts were already benefitting the middle class. I thought that might ‘earn’ me a ton of criticism from local lefties. The first lefty to criticize me was Jerry von Korff, a member of the ISD 742 School Board. In my LTE, I included a paragraph that said “The Dow rose 25%, the S&P 500 rose 19% and the NASDAQ rose 28% in 2017. With the stock market hitting 75 new record highs, employee 401(k)s are getting fatter. I’d love hearing Democrats explain to the 70% of Americans with retirement plans, mutual funds or directly invested in the market how they aren’t winning.”

von Korff’s reply was “Starting with Trump’s inauguration, the Dow has risen from 19,827.3 to 25,075.1 — an increase of 26 percent. (See Politifact) But it’s not as impressive as its performance during the equivalent period under Obama. Under Obama, the Dow increased from 7,949.1 to 10,572 — a rise of 33 percent. In fact, the Dow’s rise was even more impressive under Obama if you start measuring at the market’s low point, on March 9, 2009, during the depths of the Great Recession. That day, the Dow closed at 6,547. Between then and Jan. 5 — a 10-month period — the Dow rose by a stunning 61 percent. That’s more than three times faster than Trump’s rise over the same period in his term.”

von Korff isn’t the first lefty to use this talking point. He won’t be the last, either. What von Korff avoided talking about was that the stock market should’ve grown a ton coming out of the Great Recession. He also didn’t talk about how President Obama’s policies left wages stagnant for almost a decade or that economic growth was pathetic during President Obama’s time in office. This graphic will illustrate the fact that the economy underperformed:

Most importantly, von Korff didn’t talk about how companies are a) investing in their companies again and b) handing out bonuses to their non-executive employees. The point is that Democrats can’t just be happy that people have a shot at improving their lives for the first time in a decade. Democrats understand that their chance at retaking a majority in the House is slipping away as the economy improves. Happy people don’t usually create wave elections, which is what Democrats need.

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