President Donald Trump took to Twitter on Monday to boast about an economic performance that is likely not true, and he got fact-checked by an unlikely source: Fox News.
“The GDP Rate (4.2%) is higher than the Unemployment Rate (3.9%) for the first time in over 100 years!” Trump tweeted.
The news outlet, which is often said to have a symbiotic relationship with the president, countered Trump’s claim that this is the first time in more than a century the country experiences a GDP growth that is higher than the unemployment rate, listing a number of years in which this scenario was true.
“Since 1948, there have been 63 quarters with a GDP growth rate higher than avg quarterly unemployment rate,” Fox News Research tweeted in response to the president’s remarks.
Fox News‘ tweet also listed the quarters in question: Q2 2018, Q1 2006, Q3 2003, Q2 2000, Q4 1999, Q3 1999,,Q4 1998, Q3 1998, Q3 1997, Q2 1997, Q2 1996.
Since 1948, there have been 63 quarters with a GDP growth rate higher than avg quarterly unemployment rate
Recent Quarters with GDP Growth higher than Unemployment Rate:
•Q2 1996 https://t.co/xc873PMf6K
— Fox News Research (@FoxNewsResearch) September 10, 2018
Twitter users were quick to point out the unexpected source of this fact check, contending that while it is shocking, it is also refreshing to see the media doing its job.
“OMG! FOX NEWS just fact checked Donald Trump…. it’s ALL lies!,” one user wrote, while another added, “Thank you for rebutting the POTUS’ lie. It’s both shocking and refreshing. But, will this fact be broadcast on your channel? Your viewers deserve to know the truth.”
Trump’s claims were also contradicted by the chairman of the Council of Economic Advisers, Kevin Hassett, during a Monday press conference during which he stated that the unemployment rate is lower than the GDP rate for the first time in 10 years, not 100 as the president suggested in his tweet. In his speculation of how the error might have happened, Hassett suggested that an adviser could have “added a zero” when conveying the information to the president, Aol reported.
White House chief economic adviser Kevin Hassett contradicts President Trump's tweet falsely stating that GDP growth has exceeded the unemployment rate for the first time in over 100 years. Hassett says it's 10 years https://t.co/KrFMGb2jDV pic.twitter.com/bGRSD69RvF
— CBS News (@CBSNews) September 10, 2018
“You’d have to talk to the president about where the number came from, but the correct number is 10 years,” Hassett said.
Trump’s economic boast came just a few days after former President Barack Obama told a crowd in Illinois that the idea that Trump is solely responsible for the economic recovery is unfounded.
“By the time I left office, household income was near its all-time high, and the uninsured rate hit an all-time low, poverty rates were falling. I mention this just so when you hear how great the economy is doing right now, let’s just remember when this recovery started,” Obama said in a speech on Friday, adding that the job numbers are similar to those seen in 2015 and 2016, when he was in office, Fox News pointed out.