During an interview with The Today Show’s Matt Lauer that aired this morning, Speaker of the House John Boehner (R-OH) admitted that the economy is improving, though he went to great lengths to argue that the economic policies of the Obama administration have held it back from recovering even more:
LAUER: You talk about the economy. Is it recovering?
BOEHNER: It is. There are certainly signs of life. But I would argue that it should be doing a lot better. It’s doing better in spite of what Washington is doing to the economy.
LAUER: But it does put some Republicans in a difficult position. You’ve got better job numbers, you’ve got better manufacturing numbers, consumer debt is down, consumer confidence is up. Isn’t it hard to run against a recovering economy?
BOEHNER: But Matt, my point is it should be doing better.
A slew of Republicans, acknowledging that continuing to bash the economy in spite of the good news that keeps coming out may not be a workable strategy, have pivoted to claiming credit for the recovery. But thus far, Republican leaders like Boehner and House Majority Leader Eric Cantor have not followed suit. As we’ve noted, the employment picture would have been significantly better were it not for the Republican insistence on cutting federal spending and laying off hundreds of thousands of public employees.