Issues & Insights
Screenshot of Joe Biden's prime-time address.

Biden’s COVID-19 ‘Rescue’ Plan Is Based On 5 Big Lies

I&I Editorial

Joe Biden went on prime time this week to promote his COVID-19 plans. For a guy who promises to be honest with the public, he’s off to a terrible start. Since mainstream media fact-checkers are now on their four-year vacation, we’ll set the record straight on several key claims he made.

1) “You will see it very clearly if you examine what the twin crises of pandemic and this sinking economy have laid bare.”

Sinking economy? Where has Biden been for the past six months? As the Bureau of Economic Analysis has already reported, the economy grew at a stunning 33.4% in the third quarter of this year – well above anyone’s expectations. The Atlanta Fed’s GDPNow pegs growth in the fourth quarter at a very strong 7.4%. (The last time GDP grew that much in a quarter was during the Reagan boom.) Unemployment, which was supposed to be close to 10% now, according to mainstream economists, is down to 6.7%. What’s more, as of November, 17 states had unemployment levels at 5% or lower. That’s not to say we are out of the woods, but the idea that the economy is “sinking” is a figment of Biden’s imagination. Either that, or he’s purposely misleading the country to justify another $1.9 trillion in stimulus spending.

Over the weekend, a Biden aid claimed the economy was “spiraling downward.”

2) “Moody’s, an independent Wall Street firm, said my approach will create more than 18 million good-paying jobs.”

It is true that Moody’s economist Mark Zandi claimed in a report that Biden’s economic plan would create millions of jobs. But as we noted in this space earlier, Zandi is a partisan with a poor track record.

 It was the same Mark Zandi who predicted that if Trump won the election in 2016, he’d cause “a lot of lost jobs, higher unemployment, higher interest rates, lower stock prices.”

Zandi predicted that in Trump’s first term the unemployment rate would be 5.7% in 2019, and climb from there. Actual result: Unemployment was 3.5% at the end of 2019, and falling.

He said there’d be 146 million jobs in 2019. Actual result: 152 million.

Zandi said the economy would eke out just 2.8% real GDP growth from 2016 through 2019. Actual number: 7.7%.

Referring to this figure without providing context is highly misleading.

3) “ But, the vaccine rollout in the United States has been a dismal failure thus far.”

This is another Big Biden Lie that we exposed on these pages a while ago. Currently, the U.S. leads the world in the number of vaccinations administered and the number who’ve been fully vaccinated, and ranks behind only the United Kingdom among western nations on a per capita basis. What’s more, daily vaccination rates continue to skyrocket in the U.S., topping 747,000 on the day Biden made his speech.

So why is Biden claiming the rollout has been a dismal failure? One reason is to bash President Donald Trump, but the bigger reason is to justify a massive new spending program to “fix” the problem.

4) “This gets money quickly into the pockets of millions of Americans who will spend it immediately on food and rent and other basic needs. As the economists tell us, that helps the whole economy grow.”

Biden was talking about his plans to cut another stimulus check of $1,400 to Americans, which would be on top of the $600 checks people are getting right now, thanks to the last $900 billion COVID-19 bill, as well as the $400 boost in weekly unemployment checks.

But “economists” are hardly all in favor of these measures. CBS News reported that “economists are split over whether increasing the stimulus checks from $600 to $2,000 per person is a good idea.”

Liberal economist Larry Summers called the $2,000 payments a “big mistake,” saying that “there is no good economic argument for the $2,000 checks” and that, in fact, they risk overheating the economy.

As for the unemployment bonus, some economists have noted that making unemployment nearly as, if not more, lucrative than holding a job will – not surprisingly – discourage people from finding work. No matter what Biden thinks, that’s not how you grow the economy.

Finally, it’s far from clear that people will “spend it immediately.” Some 60% of the money sent out through the CARES Act was either saved or used to pay down debt, according to a study published by the National Bureau of Economic Analysis.

5) “A growing number of top economists has shown, even our debt situation will be more stable, not less stable if we seize this moment with vision and purpose.”

There are some economists on the left who figure that, with interest rates so low, why not borrow trillions more to “invest” in liberal wish-list items.

But it’s hardly a consensus, and we seriously doubt that it’s “growing.”

Manhattan Institute economist Brian Riedl explained the folly of this thinking:

“First, the debt is already set to soar in the absence of any new spending. And second, these bloated debt levels will mean that any future rise in interest rates could bring a full-scale debt crisis.”

Meanwhile, Forbes reported earlier this month that “the debt load governments like the U.S. are taking on to fund such stimulus measures could stall economic growth for years to come, the World Bank warned Tuesday, echoing concerns among experts worried inflation could trigger another recession.”

As the Committee to Unleash Prosperity notes, Biden’s would be the fifth – or it is sixth? – virus-relief bill enacted in less than a year, and would bring the total to almost $5.5 trillion.

And Biden’s plan is stuffed full of liberal wish-list items that have nothing to do with COVID. A Biden adviser tried over the weekend to defend the plan’s inclusion of things like $20 billion for public transit, $9 billion for cybersecurity, and a federal $15 minimum wage.

“Only a half-wit would ever support this monstrosity,” the Committee wryly observes, “which means it is likely to romp through the House and Senate.”

So there you have it. A $1.9 trillion stimulus plan built on lies and misinformation. Joe “No Malarkey” Biden is not off to a good start.

— Written by the I&I Editorial Board

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The Issues and Insights Editorial Board has decades of experience in journalism, commentary and public policy.


  • “A growing number of top economists has shown, even our debt situation will be more stable, not less stable if we seize this moment with vision and purpose.” First, most economists have been totally wrong about the Trump economy, and other things, for so long they really shouldn’t be called experts. Second, “vision and purpose?” What a bunch of tired bromides and platitudes.

  • “he’s purposely misleading the country to justify another $1.9 trillion in stimulus spending.”

    You got that right. Typical pork barrel, to be paid for with tax increases. A transfer of funds, a redistribution of wealth to the ruling party’s pigs at the trough, with a little slop spillage to keep the other animals happy. A governmental remaking of the economy, when you consider this as just one in a series of stimuli whose total will soon exceed annual private sector GDP.

    “No matter what Biden thinks, that’s not how you grow the economy.”

    The Communist International, formed by Lenin in 1917, was never primarily interested in growing the economy. The USA party branch has made clear that a purge of the opposition is number one on their agenda (and are off to a flying start). That is how ideological revolutions work, whether religious in nature or an atheistic “election coup”. That is the nature of the beast, be it Tomás de Torquemada & the Spanish Inquisition enforcing religious conformity or ruling party USA. Enforcing ideological conformity is number one on the agenda in this “color revolution”. Uncle Joe (Biden) has made it very clear that skin pigmentation is paramount. The new aesthetic: White is bad, evil and must be replaced by a palette of darker skin shades. With exceptions for the party elite, who have special entitlements (French laundry dinners without masks, access to restricted activities like haircuts, boating, dancing in Times Square).

    “could stall economic growth for years to come”

    It’s biggest selling point! Unlike Chinese communists (who practice capitalism), USA communists (dba = party in control) hate capitalism and want to see capitalist USA destroyed. Math and economics are not their strong points, and their ilk is famous for crashing economies worldwide. The Internet, cell phones, Edison’s electricity system, movies, basketball, baseball, football, etc. are all creations of the hated gender & skin color. So economic destruction destroys the enemy and its creations. Collateral damage, serving their perceived greater good.

  • Knowing that the radical left will bend over backwards to support the “disenfranchised”, I’ve decided to skip charitable donations, and put my covid bucks in gold. I don’t need the money, gave the first lump to my small business owner brother, but enough with the kumbaya. . .

  • Almost all politics is theater and in our fair land it is performed on the biggest stage of all – The Beltway Playhouse. The mainstream media should serve as neutral critics for the newest production, the farce entitled the Biden Administration, but as we all know most of these yokels put politics over truth and journalistic integrity when they became rabid agents of the Democratic Party. Expecting fair criticism of Biden policies from the likes of these usual suspects is like expecting Lady Pelosi to be fair and rational. As George H.W. Bush said about eating broccoli – not gonna happen.

  • this article has chosen to buy into the figures that the government publishes on unemployment and gdp. well if thats the case i’ve got a nice piece of property in florida called everglades estates.for sale.

  • #1 The pandemic is completely fake.
    #2. Jobs when at the same time it is likely the economy will face shutdowns for all of 2021.
    #3. The fake vaccine is intended to help with mild cases only. Not tested against severe cases
    or to stop the spread of any virus.
    #4. Money spent on food, rent and basic needs does not help the economy grow. That money
    is spent on survival. $2,000 over 12 months is only $167/ month. Not much spending
    #5. You never have stable debt, especially if it is increasing by $trillions in a short time. All that debt eventually has to be rolled over since it will never be paid off. At some point, the markets will lose faith in a government whose sole purpose is to create a socialist state by borrowing money into eternity.

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