Many of the Democrats who are scapegoating greedy businesses for inflation do not actually believe it. But they hope you will. President Biden and congressional Democrats spent a full year downplaying the inflation that buried families and swept across the economy. Now that the president’s approval rating has crashed into the 30s and voters seem eager to replace the Democrats’ congressional majority, the party has become desperate to “solve” the problem — by deflecting blame.
After all, truly addressing inflation would require admitting that the American Rescue Plan dramatically worsened inflation, and then abandoning the Build Back Better proposal. It would mean repealing new tariffs, as well as canceling new Buy America rules, ethanol mandates, and expensive regulations on economic development. An anti-inflation agenda would include expanding capacity at our ports, repealing the Jones Act, a vintage piece of protectionist legislation that increases shipping costs, and suspending the Davis-Bacon Act’s prevailing-wage rules. A commonsense approach to inflation would also promote domestic oil and gas production and end the student-loan-payment moratorium.
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Brian Riedl is a senior fellow at the Manhattan Institute. @Brian_Riedl