While highlighting new and ongoing infrastructure investments across the country, President Joe Biden on Thursday continued to praise the recent GDP report that found the nation's economy grew at a 3.3% annual pace -- much more rapid than expected -- and he gave credit to Americans for an economy that has exceeded expectations.
"Thanks to the American people, America now has the strongest growth, the lowest inflation rate of any major economy in the world. It's because of you," he said at an event in Superior, Wisconsin.
The GDP report released Thursday found that in addition to the economy growing at an unexpectedly brisk pace, inflation has eased -- showing Americans' willingness to spend freely in the face of high interest rates and price levels. The latest data marked the sixth straight quarter where the GDP had grown at an annual pace of 2% or more.
Biden took a victory lap for overcoming predictions that a recession would happen since he came into office and the constant headlines warning one was around the corner. With a chuckle, he read the optimistic headlines on the strong fourth quarter.
"Here's this morning's headlines from the Wall Street Journal and other papers: 'U.S. shatters expectations.' Second headline: 'The U.S. economy boomed in 2023.' Third: 'U.S. economy grew at a shocking pace.' I love the 'shocking pace' bit," Biden said. "But my favorite is from the Wall Street Journal: 'What recession? Growth ended accelerating in 2023.'"
As Biden gears up for the general election, he also emphasized how Americans are finally starting to feel better about the state of the economy, which will be a key issue for voters in November. He credited his policies for reaching an auspicious point with the economy.
"Just last week, we saw the biggest jump in 30 years and how positive consumers are feeling about the economy. Things are finally beginning to sink in," he said. "We passed a lot of really good legislation. We knew it was going to take time for it to begin to take hold, but it's taken hold now in turning the economy around."
And while he touted his successes, Biden also criticized former President Donald Trump over his recent comments that the former president hoped the economy would crash on Biden's watch.
Earlier this month, Trump said in an interview with Lou Dobbs that he wanted the economy to crash in the next year because "I don't want to be Herbert Hoover."
Biden questioned, "can you believe it?"
"Well, he said he's hoping ... it happens soon while I'm still president. That's what he's hoping for," Biden said.
Though progress is being made, Biden said, "we obviously have more work to do, but we're making real progress."