How the media on the right and the left covered the latest inflation figures

Prices rose 3.3 percent in May from a year earlier, according to data released Wednesday, a lower-than-expected number. The partisan media portrayed that number very differently.

Conservative sites acknowledged that there has been progress in the fight to reduce inflation. But they also used the announcement to criticize President Biden’s handling of the economy, saying the number was too high to begin with.

Some liberal sites celebrated the news as a victory for Mr. Biden’s economic agenda.

Inflation is a top concern for Americans in this fall’s election, polls show. And for most voters, their assessment of the economy reflects the media landscape: Democrats tend to approve of Mr. Biden’s management of the economy, while Republicans disapprove of his work on the matter.

Here’s how a sampling of the media covered the news:

Conservative commentators and media have repeatedly blamed Mr. Biden’s policies fueled hyperinflation, raising the cost of everything from basic necessities to airline tickets. Like Republican lawmakers, conservative media outlets have repeatedly referred to the price hike as Bidenflation.

Inflation hit a four-decade high of 9.1 percent in June 2022. The rate has since fallen sharply, but remains above the Federal Reserve’s target of 2 percent.

A conservative site, The Daily Wire has been critical of Mr. The Bidens’ handling of the economy, leading a four-part series looking at how Bidenomics is screwing up the American people.

In an article titled “Joe Biden’s Fragile Economy,” writer Jim Nelles said the promising inflation report, along with a booming stock market, showed an economy that was strong on the surface. But those numbers masked deeper problems, he said.

The cumulative impact of inflation, combined with high interest rates, is making the dream of home ownership more out of reach for most young and working-class Americans, Mr. Nelles wrote.

Reacting to Wednesday’s inflation report, The National Review, a conservative news site and magazine, published an article titled 3.3 percent isn’t good enough. Writer Dominic Pino argued that the Federal Reserve, which has raised interest rates to reduce inflation, should keep those rates where they are until inflation returns to 2 percent. His view contrasts with that of many progressives, who say inflation is now low enough for the Fed to cut interest rates, which are squeezing poor Americans.

The Fed’s job is to hold prices and full employment, not to the financial sector, or to politicians who also want to cut rates, Mr. Pino wrote.

They have often blamed big corporations for inflation rates, which they say would be high regardless of who was president because of supply chain issues and geopolitical instability caused by Russia’s invasion of Ukraine.

The American Prospect, a liberal site that has long pushed progressive economic policies, used an article Wednesday about the inflation report to highlight a different political effort by Mr. Bidens: His attempt to go after unexpected unwanted fees added to the cost of things like hotel stays and ticket purchases. God. Biden has listed the push as a key pillar of his effort to lower consumer prices.

Americans have felt they are getting less and paying more and even being cheated in the process, wrote David Dayen, the sites executive editor. The Biden administration’s focus on hidden fees was an example of Mr. Biden speaking about this dissatisfaction.

MeidasTouch, a liberal media network, celebrated Wednesday’s news in an article titled Biden’s Economy Does Better Than Expected (Again).

In the article, Aaron Parnas argued that the economy under Mr. Biden has repeatedly defied all expectations, pointing to strong job growth and easing inflation. He also said Mr. Biden had done a better job than former President Donald J. Trump, whom most voters say they trust more about the economy.

President Biden inherited an economy that was losing jobs due to failures during the Trump administration, Mr. wrote Parnassus.

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