Economy

Trump’s School Says Biden’s Plans Are Better

JM Ashby
Written by JM Ashby

Whether or not you believe Donald Trump legitimately studied and graduated from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School of Business, Trump likes to claim the school as his own. He likes to claim he has a "better education" than his opponents.

I'm not going to dispute the prestige of the Wharton School which now says former Vice President Joe Biden's plans for the economy would be better than Trump's in almost every conceivable way.

Biden's plans would lead to higher wages, more growth, and eventually less debt compared to Trump's.

From CBS News:

Joe Biden's economic proposals would create a faster growing economy, higher wages for American workers and reduce the debt compared to where the U.S. is headed under President Donald Trump, according to new analysis from the University of Pennsylvania's Wharton School. [...]

"If you got the U.S. on this path, you would lower the debt and raise GDP," said Richard Prisinzano, the director of policy analysis at the Penn Wharton Budget Model, a nonpartisan group at the top business school. "It is productive spending that Mr. Biden is proposing."

To say that Biden's proposals would lead to "productive" spending is important because Trump would continue to spend plenty of money as well, but he would flush most of it down the toilet just as he has done for the past several years.

Wharton's analysis relies on the Congressional Budget Office's (CBO) estimates of where things are headed under Trump's baseline of policy. You could be fair and say their analysis discounts the possibility that Trump's policies will change, but there's no reason to think they will.

Trump and the Republican party have not passed any significant economic policies to speak of since passing their tax cuts for the rich in late 2017. Tax cuts are their end game, not infrastructure spending, health care, social welfare, or any other spending program that is even vaguely progressive. Their entire philosophy is based on wasteful spending, not "productive" spending. The Republican party is a post-policy party; they aren't a governing party.

Wharton's analysis found that both Trump and Biden's policies will increase the national debt. That's unavoidable given our current situation, but their analysis found that Biden's policies would eventually reduce our debt while Trump's will increase it in perpetuity.

I can only hope that coronavirus stimulus spending and the success of the pandemic unemployment program (before Republicans allowed it to expire) reminded that public that government investment in our own economy is a good thing. It probably did and that's one reason why Republicans refused to renew it.

  • muselet

    I’m not used to analyses by business schools that don’t prioritize tax cuts and ignore larger issues. It’s great to see a first-tier business school looking at policy, I just have to adjust my view of reality.

    Talking Points Memo:

    Wharton’s analysis, which was compiled over several weeks, does not include Biden’s recent proposal to use taxes to penalize companies that move jobs and manufacturing overseas.

    Prisinzano told CBS that Penn Wharton could not offer a similar analysis for Trump since the Republican candidate hasn’t offered plans for his second term with enough detail.

    Donald Trump will be rage-tweeting about this for days.

    –alopecia

    • Draxiar

      Trump hasn’t offered plans (he dunna have any other than his whiny bitching) and the GOP policy platform is “Whatever trump says”.

      Now that’s an engine a good ‘Murican rage addict can get behind.