Yesterday, the Center for American Progress released a report by American Worker Project director David Madland comparing the US economy during the presidencies of George W. Bush (2001-2007) and Herbert Hoover (1929-1932). Although today’s economy cannot technically be labeled a recession (whereas Hoover presided over a stock market crash followed by four straight years of economic deterioration), a close inspection of the economic track records and ideology of these two presidents reveals that they are quite similar. Here are some highlights from the study:
Comparison #1: Housing
Under both presidents, housing foreclosures rose rapidly—even more rapidly under Bush than Hoover. Housing starts also fell significantly, though to a much greater degree under Hoover than Bush.
Comparison #2: Employment
Bush has presided over the worst annual job creation record since Hoover, the only president to ever preside over an economy that has lost jobs. Although Bush has created jobs at an annual rate of .07 percent, most presidents in the 20th century have boasted a 2 to 4 percent increase.
Comparison #3: Income
While the drop in average income during Bush has been less severe than that of the Hoover era, it is one of only three instances since the end of the Great Depression in which average income for most Americans has decreased during a president’s tenure. In contrast, income inequality in the Bush years has grown to levels above even those during the Depression era.
Read the full report.