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Economic growth so strong, the GOP is literally at a loss for words

Economic growth was so good in President Joe Biden's first year that Republicans literally found themselves at a loss for words.

Around this time three years ago, in response to encouraging news on economic growth, Republican National Committee Chair Ronna McDaniel published a celebratory tweet:

"You can't deny our economy is roaring: Fastest GDP growth in 13 years.... Record low unemployment... Thank you [Donald Trump]!"

This came to mind yesterday, after the public learned that economic growth in 2021 reached its highest level in nearly four decades, on the heels of news that the economy created 6.4 million jobs last year and saw the sharpest one-year improvement in the unemployment rate on record.

Naturally, I was curious how Republicans would respond to the news. A few options came to mind.

Maybe leading GOP officials would make the case that the robust economic recovery is nice, but President Joe Biden doesn't deserve any credit. Perhaps they'd argue that it's too soon to applaud good news since there's still plenty of economic work to do. Maybe they'd insist that the strong growth and millions of jobs in 2021 were the inevitable reaction to the 2020 downturn.

Perhaps they'd argue that the United States economy is a massive beast, and it's unrealistic to think a president's agenda is uniquely responsible for year-to-year shifts. Maybe they'd even try to argue that Trump deserves credit for economic conditions he had nothing to do with.

But as it turns out, Republicans went with an entirely different approach: They simply ignored the strongest economic growth since 1984, as if it didn't happen.

The RNC didn't bother to issue a statement. House Minority Leader Kevin McCarthy and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell similarly acted as if the developments weren't worthy of acknowledgement.

In other words, economic growth was so good in Biden's first year in the White House that Republicans literally found themselves at a loss for words.

Let's not forget that over the course of the last year, whenever there was discouraging economic data, leading GOP voices were only too pleased to draw a direct connection between the president's policies and the health of the economy.

Last May, for example, McCarthy released a press statement that read in part, "Today's disappointing jobs report confirms once again that President Biden's tax-and-spend policies are bad for American workers, families, and small businesses.... Experts are calling this jobs report the 'worst miss in 23 years', and it was a direct result of President Biden's counterproductive policies. So President Biden is not fixing a crisis, but creating new ones."

Eight months later, are Biden's Republican critics still prepared to argue that his agenda is directly responsible for the nation's economic conditions?