The Biden administration is led by lawyers, academics, and community organizers — but few business leaders, a report from the Committee to Unleash Prosperity recently revealed.
According to the conservative think tank, the top 68 individuals in the administration have spent an average of 2.4 years in the business world, with only one in eight boasting “extensive business experience.” The median length of business experience for Biden officials is zero years.
“Surely we want our political class to have a diversity of backgrounds. We want lawyers, grassroots activists, those with political and policy experience, scientists, health experts, and academics with required specialties,” the report argued. “But we also want people who have experience running large operations with hundreds and thousands of employees and who understand logistics.”
President Joe Biden and Vice President Kamala Harris each have zero years of business experience. Likewise, top Cabinet officials — such as Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen, Secretary of Labor Marty Walsh, and U.S. Trade Representative Katherine Tai — do not have any experience in the business world. However, a handful of top officials — such as Commerce Secretary Gina Raimondo and White House Chief of Staff Ron Klain, both of whom worked in venture capital — have more than a decade of business experience.
The Committee to Unleash Prosperity also evaluated members of the Trump administration. In addition to President Donald Trump’s 45 years in the business world, Commerce Secretary Wilbur Ross boasted 42 years, Treasury Secretary Steven Mnuchin had 25 years, and Education Secretary Betsy DeVos spent 23 years in the arena.
Business sentiment is suffering due to economic turmoil following COVID and the lockdown-induced recession, with 34% of small business owners calling inflationary pressures their “single most important problem” — the highest level since 1980, according to the National Federation of Independent Businesses’ most recent Small Business Optimism Index.
Indeed, the Committee to Unleash Prosperity report comes after the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics revealed that the Consumer Price Index (CPI) rose 9.1% between June 2021 and June 2022, while the Producer Price Index (PPI) rose 11.3% during the same period. Among the factors behind increasing price levels are supply chain issues, higher energy prices, and persistent worker shortages.
President Biden responded to the inflation news by arguing that price levels are “unacceptably high” and affirmed that inflation “is our most pressing economic challenge,” yet contended that the recent findings are outdated.
“Energy alone comprised nearly half of the monthly increase in inflation. Today’s data does not reflect the full impact of nearly 30 days of decreases in gas prices,” he said in a statement, noting that gas prices have fallen by $0.40 since June. “Those savings are providing important breathing room for American families.”
Biden has also characterized inflation as “Putin’s Price Hike” — a reference to the Russian invasion of Ukraine and its impact on global commodity prices. “High gas prices at the pump, energy, and food prices accounted for around half of the monthly price increases, and gas pump prices are up by $2 a gallon in many places since Russian troops began to threaten Ukraine,” Biden said last month. “Even as we continue our work to defend freedom in Ukraine, we must do more — and quickly — to get prices down here in the United States.”
Inflation is a central issue for Americans casting their ballots in this year’s midterm elections. Only 1% of voters currently characterize economic conditions as excellent, according to a poll released on Monday by The New York Times, which showed that Biden now has a 33% approval rating.