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Democrats 'Panic' After Obama Official Predicts Massive Economic Recovery

Democrats are worried after a former Obama administration official predicted the U.S. economy will bounce back from the cornavirus outbreak in the coming months. 

According to a Politico report on Tuesday, Jason Furman, President Barack Obama's former economic adviser told a group of Democratic and Republican officials on a Zoom call in April, “We are about to see the best economic data we’ve seen in the history of this country."

Furman has continued to warn Democrats, including Joe Biden's presidential compaign, that millions of Americans could rejoin the workforce this year. 
  • The thought of President Donald Trump overseeing record monthly job and GDP growth has caused "panic," among Democrats, and particularly Obama alumni, Politico reported.
“This is my big worry,” said one former Obama White House official.
  • “It's high — high, high, high, high," is how the unnamed Deomocrat described the level of concern among top party officials. 
  • “Even today when we are at over 20 million unemployed Trump gets high marks on the economy, so I can’t imagine what it looks like when things go in the other direction," he said.
"Trump beats Biden on the economy even right now!" bemoaned a progressive Democratic operative, who also spoke anonymously, referring to recent polls

Other Democrats, though, expressed optimism that the economy's long-term challenges will still prove insurmoutable. 

Sen. Chris Coons of Delaware: "It seems pretty unlikely to me that we’re going to have a really robust recovery in the next few months. ... Of course, we all hope there will be."

Democratic strategist Kenneth Baer: "In absolute terms, the economy will look historically terrible come November."

The case for a "transition to greatness":  Furman, who is now a Harvard professor, argues that COVID-19 hit the U.S. economy like a natural disaster —  not like the Great Depression or the Great Recession. 

That could allow for a rapid economic bounce-back as opposed to a slow, grinding recovery. 
  • Furman foresees four months of blockbuster numbers starting with the July jobs report, which covers June.
  • “You could easily have 1 to 2 million jobs created a month in those four reports before November,” he said.
The White House makes a similar argument, with Trump and his campaign promising a "transition to greatness" in the third quarter of 2020.
 
The president and his allies also accuse Democrats and the media of trying to "politicize" the pandemic in an attempt to prevent his reelection. 

According to Furman, the only thing that could derail his predicted economic boom is another "really serious set of lockdowns."
 
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