Fox & Friends' Kilmeade revises economic history to defend Bush

››› ››› JOCELYN FONG

Fox & Friends co-host Brian Kilmeade falsely claimed that when president Obama took office, he found "50 plus months of economic growth" and "between 5 and 7 percent unemployment." In fact, the unemployment rate was 7.7 percent in January 2009 and both employment and GDP had been falling for months prior to Obama's inauguration.

Kilmeade claimed Obama inherited "50 plus months of economic growth," "between 5 and 7 percent unemployment"

From the January 28 edition of Fox News' Fox & Friends:

KILMEADE: I did not think the President was going to do this. He said, let's just remember what I got when I walked in the door. What I had is after eight years of tax cuts, unfunded prescription drug plans and two wars without financing, I found myself in a mountain of debt essentially. But what he also found was 50 plus months of economic growth going into that. He also found between 5 and 7 percent unemployment. President Bush had it under 5 percent during those times.

In fact, both economic growth and employment were dropping when Obama took office

NBER: Economic activity began decline in December 2007. The National Bureau of Economic Research announced on December 1, 2008, that the recession began in December 2007, based on "economy-wide measures of economic activity," including domestic production and employment.

Economic growth was falling when Obama took office. Contrary to Kilmeade's claim that when Obama took office he found "50 plus months of economic growth," real GDP (Gross Domestic Product) had been decreasing for several months prior to January 2009. From the Bureau of Labor Statistics:

BLS graph

Unemployment rate was 7.7 percent in January 2009. Contrary to Kilmeade's claim that when Obama entered office, he "found between 5 and 7 percent unemployment," the unemployment rate was 7.7 percent in January 2009 and had been increasing for several months prior to his inauguration. From BLS data (accessed January 28):

cps graph

A National Public Radio chart of monthly change in nonfarm payroll employment based on BLS data indicates that Obama took office during the peak of monthly payroll job losses:

payroll chart

Posted In
Economy
Network/Outlet
Fox News Channel
Person
Brian Kilmeade
Show/Publication
FOX & Friends, State Of The Union
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