The unexpectedly strong January jobs report, in the middle of the omicron surge in the coronavirus pandemic, makes it clear that President Joe Biden’s signature spending plan, “Build Back Better,” is unnecessary and arguably inflationary.
Sen. Joe Manchin (D-WV) already stopped the legislation in December by declaring that he opposed it, but the administration hoped to woo him back with less expensive or piece-by-piece proposals, which the Biden administration said would create jobs.
It turns out that the American people are better than their government at creating those jobs. The January report came in at 467,000 jobs, beating expectations of about 150,000, and adjusting previous months upward, for a total of 700,000 jobs created.
Unemployment rose slightly, from 3.9% to 4.0%, but that was a result of people coming back to the labor force. The U.S. economy defied the omicron variant: people decided to move ahead with their lives, and everyone gained as a result.
It is notable that the jobs gains came in spite of the Biden administration’s two main economic policy pushes: massive new government spending, and vaccine mandates in the workplace. Manchin stalled the former, and the U.S. Supreme Court tossed out the latter.
While Biden and his surrogates will try to claim credit for the hiring bonanza, the truth is that the best thing that could have happened to the administration was that the filibuster held in the Senate and their agenda stalled.
The $1.2 trillion infrastructure law remains Biden’s only real success, and it was achieved with a bipartisan vote, even while he was calling Republicans “Jim Crow 2.0.”
The fact is that infrastructure is something Americans want the government to spend money on; Trump would have done it, had Democrats and the Republican leadership let him.
Regardless, that money is barely out the door. The January jobs report is a timely reminder that the American people create jobs, not the government.
More spending, at this stage, would not create faster job growth. It would just create more inflation — and the government still has not figured out the supply chain crisis, or the mess at the ports, or how to keep thieves from raiding railroad cars.
Confidence in the administration is low, because Biden and his party are trying to expand the size and cost of a government that cannot take care of the basics.
The best thing for Biden — and the economy — is continued gridlock in Washington.
Joel B. Pollak is Senior Editor-at-Large at Breitbart News and the host of Breitbart News Sunday on Sirius XM Patriot on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 10 p.m. ET (4 p.m. to 7 p.m. PT). He is the author of the recent e-book, Neither Free nor Fair: The 2020 U.S. Presidential Election. His recent book, RED NOVEMBER, tells the story of the 2020 Democratic presidential primary from a conservative perspective. He is a winner of the 2018 Robert Novak Journalism Alumni Fellowship. Follow him on Twitter at @joelpollak.