Biden says he can beat Donald Trump again, speaks of a possible slight recession
President Biden said Tuesday that the US economy may experience a “mild recession” but he still believes he will “beat again” Donald Trump in 2024.
Biden denied that the economy is in the midst of a recession — despite fitting the standard definition of two consecutive quarters of contraction — but conceded in an interview on CNN that a downturn could materialize.
“I don’t think there will be a recession. If so, it will be a very mild recession. That means we’re going to move slightly lower,” Biden told Jake Tapper in the taped 15-minute interview.
Tapper added, “You just said a mild recession is possible.”
“It’s possible. It’s possible. I’m not counting on it,” Biden said.
U.S. gross domestic product shrank 0.9% in the second quarter of 2022 after contracting 1.6% in the first quarter, but Biden advisers insist the country is not in recession as data showed a historically low Unemployment and lack of drama show business problems.
Despite economic uncertainty, Biden, who turns 80 next month, told Tapper he’s still considering running for president — something he’s repeatedly told his allies he intends to do.
Biden said that after the Nov. 8 midterm elections, “I’m going to be making a decision.”
Tapper asked, “Is one of the calculations that you think you’re the only one who can beat Donald Trump?”
Biden replied, “I think I can beat Donald Trump again.”
Fears of a recession have grown as the Federal Reserve aggressively hikes interest rates to tame the worst inflation since 1981. Annual inflation hit 9.1% in June and was 8.3% in August despite lower gasoline prices – and gas prices are on the rise again as OPEC+ cuts production.
Biden’s own assessment of economic developments has evolved.
In April, Biden said, “Nobody is predicting a recession now. They predict, some predict, that there could be a recession in 2023. I’m worried about that.”
But in June, the president scolded a reporter near his Delaware beach house for asking about economists “who say a recession is more likely than ever.”
“No – the majority of them don’t say that. Come on, don’t invent anything, okay? Now you sound like a Republican politician,” Biden said. “I’m joking. That was a joke. But joking aside, no, I don’t think so [inevitable].”