The "Bush Recession"

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It is quite reasonable to discuss Bush's reaction to the recession early in his term. You could argue he didn't do the right things, or didn't do enough of the right things, to help turn the economy around.

But you cannot argue that the recession was created by him. You cannot argue that he inherited a strong economy from Clinton.

Recession is most commonly defined as negative GDP growth -- that is, a shrinking economy -- for consecutive quarters. GDP shrinkage actually began in third quarter of FY2000, which nine months before Bush even took office, let alone was elected. The consecutive quarters of shrinkage ("the recession," by some definitions) began in October 2000, which was the quarter that Bush was elected, which ended before he took office.

The latest date I have seen for marking the beginning of the recession is March 2001, which was still a mere month after Bush took office, and long before any of his economic policies could have taken effect. And even then, the evidence is clear that the economy was severely weakened at least a year before that.

The facts are clear: Bush inherited a weak economy.

So please, let's put to rest the inane idea he inherited a strong economy. Feel free to talk about whether his policies after taking office were good or bad, but don't use the fact that we had a weak economy early in his term as evidence: you're entitled to your own opinions, but not your own facts.

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<pudge/*> (pronounced "PudgeGlob") is thousands of posts over many years by Pudge.

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