By Tom Quiner
President Obama is the anti-Reagan as I pointed out in yesterday’s Quiner’s Diner post. His economic policy is pretty much the opposite of the path taken by Mr. Reagan.
So the bottom line is the bottom line. How do results compare?
When Ronald Reagan took office, the misery index (the unemployment rate added to the inflation rate) stood at a staggering 19.33. By the time he left office, it had fallen to 9.72.
When Barack Obama took office, the misery index stood at 7.83. In his third year in office, it has risen to 12.67. His approach isn’t improving our economic misery and may be making it worse.
The economy began to boom in Mr. Reagan’s third year in office as the impact of Reaganomics was felt. The GDP increased between 5 to 8 percent per quarter in his third year and continued a torrid pace right into the election cycle in his fourth year in office.
Unemployment was still high, but dropping steadily, reaching 7.2 percent by election day.
Mr. Obama’s numbers don’t look so good. The Federal reserve projects a growth in GDP of less than 3 percent this year. And latest unemployment numbers continue to nudge upwards above 9 percent.
The impact of Reaganomics was felt for years.
The economy grew by a third over the next seven years.
Twenty million new jobs were created. Civilian employment increased by 20 percent.
The unemployment rate came down to 5.3 % by the time he left office.
Let us compare results as accurately as we can:
• The Reagan recovery averaged 7.1% economic growth over the first seven quarters compared to 2.8% for Mr. Obama. And its dropping during the current President’s watch.
• Unemployment fell 3.3 percentage points during Reagan’s first seven quarters compared to 1.3 for Obama.
It’s important to note that Mr. Reagan accomplished all of this while having to tame inflation at the same time. Mr. Obama, on the other hand, entered office with inflation relatively low.
At this stage in the game, the Reagan model is outperforming the Obama model.