Amid campaigning for Biden on his Bidenomics platform, Vice-President Kamala Harris made a startling admission. “Most Americans are a $400 unexpected expense away from bankruptcy.”
She was speaking about the costs of seeking an abortion out of state, but her point was a valid one and a reality that many Americans have lived with daily since Biden’s election.
According to a recent Morning Consult survey, less than half of Americans have money set aside to cover an unexpected expense of $400 or more. This means that commonplace emergencies, like medical expenses or car repairs, are financially out of reach for half of the country.
And the problem is no longer just a lower-income issue. It’s reached into households across all economic classes. In the Lending Club’s June Paycheck-to-Paycheck Report, over half of Americans are now living paycheck to paycheck, including more than half of higher-income families earning between $50-$100,000 per year.
The average middle-class family has lost over $30,000 in wealth just this past year alone, according to a Bloomberg analysis. While wealth declines, Americans are caught in the death grip of disastrous Biden energy policies costing them an estimated $2800 per year.
Inflation is at its highest level since the 1980s. The Consumer Price Index has determined that prices for common items and services have jumped almost 17% in two and a half years. Despite Biden’s boasts about higher wages, the 13% wage growth cannot keep up with the rate of inflation.
And the administration isn’t finished yet. There is more than a year left in Biden’s disastrous term.
To keep up with the daily costs of living, Americans are turning to their retirement assets. In 2023, 36% more people were forced to tap into a 401 (k) just for necessities than in 2022. The implications of these actions are painful. Not only will they not have the money they were counting on for retirement, but they are also getting hit hard by the IRS and other penalties, reducing the amount of money they can access to put food on their tables.
Many Americans are using their credit cards to pay for daily living expenses. But the Feds raised interest rates to painful levels, with the average credit card interest rate currently standing between 15% to 22%. Since half of Americans cannot pay off their monthly balances, debt is becoming unavoidable. Credit card debt has risen to its highest level ever, currently standing at $1 trillion.
It’s no surprise that Harris knows that many Americans are one unexpected crisis away from financial ruin. What is surprising is that she admits it on a tour touting the success of Bidenomics.
The mainstream media has been fact-checking and spinning Harris’s comment to minimize the damaging truth, but they aren’t helping the argument. Commenting from a year-old Federal Reserve study, one outlet explained that most Americans would simply put an unexpected $400 expense on a credit card. Other fact-checkers suggested that Americans could “simply borrow” the money from a friend or family member. Another stated that because Americans could borrow the money to pay for the expense, Harris was inaccurate in her assessment of “bankruptcy.” That makes her claim “false,” warns the fact-checkers.
These fact-checkers neatly sidestep the main point of criticism – Americans shouldn’t have to beg and borrow to pay for an emergency. The fact that fact-checkers are considering a world where Americans charge a credit card or borrow money to pay for an emergency as “normal” is alarming.
The real fact-checkers are Americans impacted by Bidenomics and the Biden administration. And they have spoken. Harris’s claim about the failure of the current administration’s economic policies, unlike so many other claims she has made during her reign, is true.