Until Very Recently, Biden’s Economic Advisors Defined ‘Recession’ as ‘Two Quarters of Negative Growth’

The Republican National Committee has unearthed a number of remarks made by several Biden officials that seriously undermine their efforts to change the definition of a recession.

Until very recently, economic experts—including members of the Biden administration—defined a recession as two consecutive quarters of economic decline. On Thursday, economic data will be released that is expected to show the U.S. economy shrank for two consecutive quarters. With this bad economic report looming ahead of the midterm elections, the Biden regime has been attempting to broaden the “technical definition” of recession to include other variables.

But as recently as May of 2022, Biden’s Chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisers Cecilia Rouse said “two quarters of negative growth” means the economy is in a recession.

And in May of 2019, Biden’s economic adviser Heather Boushey said: As a “rule of thumb,” a recession refers to “two quarters of negative growth in GDP.”  Later that year, Biden’s economic adviser Jared Bernstein defined a recession as “two consecutive quarters of declining growth.”

None other than Biden’s National Economic Council Director Brian Deese said in March of 2008: “Of course economists have a technical definition of recession, which is two consecutive quarters of negative growth.”

Deese at the time was was working for Hillary Clinton’s presidential campaign as her economic policy director. After Clinton was defeated in the Democrat primary, Deese joined Barack Obama’s campaign as an economic advisor.

In the past week, Bernstein, Rouse, and Deese, have all attempted to change the traditional definition of recession, even though they have used it themselves in the past.

Citing a “holistic look at the data,” In a White House Council of Economic Advisors post on the White House website, CEA chair Rouse and member Bernstein claimed last week that “it is unlikely that the decline in GDP in the first quarter of this year—even if followed by another GDP decline in the second quarter—indicates a recession.”

Bernstein echoed that narrative on CNN Saturday night.

“Actually two quarters of negative GDP doesn’t necessarily qualify as a recession,” he said, insisting that the variables that National Bureau of Economic Research considers to determine whether we are in a recession “tend to look pretty good.”

Monday morning, Deese also denied that the country is under a “technical definition” of recession.

“The technical definition considers a much broader spectrum of data points, but in practical terms, what matters to the American is whether they have a little economic breathing room, have more job opportunities, their wages are going up,” Deese said on CNN.

Deese repeated the message at the White House on Tuesday.

“Two negative quarters of GDP growth is not the technical definition of recession,” he insisted, adding, “it’s not the definition that economists have traditionally relied on.”

By any metric, the economy in the United States is not doing well under Biden.

There may be plenty of “job opportunities” throughout the country, but unfortunately many Americans, for whatever reason,  have left the work force.

The labor shortage is most acute in the food sector, durable goods manufacturing, wholesale and retail trade, and education and health services, according to the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. “These industries have more unfilled job openings than unemployed workers with experience in their respective industry.”

Businesses are going under because they can’t find people willing to work. Economist Lawrence Summers said the government’s juiced-up unemployment benefits created the record labor shortage.

Meanwhile, wages are not going up, as Deese suggested, they’re going down “by quite a bit,” according to Casey Mulligan, former chief economist for the Council of Economic Advisers (CEA) under former President Trump.

“It seems to me that the White House seems to be saying, ‘yeah, you’re working more and earning less, but at least you’re working more,'” Mulligan, who is currently a professor at the University of Chicago, told Fox Business. “I don’t understand the silver lining of that. We work in order to earn. That earning part is not going well.”

“That’s really the GDP. GDP combines both the labor income and capital income, but they tend to move together,” he continued “We’ve seen it in the earnings data as well. Real wages, real earnings have fallen quite a bit just in the last month as well as over the last year.”


Members of the Biden regime are reportedly twisting the arms of “their allies and sycophants” to amplify their fake narratives about the economy.

Senior administration officials are hitting the airwaves and arm-twisting reporters in private, imploring anyone who will listen that the economy — despised by majorities of both Republicans and Democrats fed up with inflation — is still healthy.

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About Debra Heine

Debra Heine is a conservative Catholic mom of six and longtime political pundit. She has written for several conservative news websites over the years, including Breitbart and PJ Media.

Photo: WASHINGTON, DC - MAY 04: U.S. President Joe Biden speaks as (L-R) Director of the Office of Management and Budget Shalanda Young, Assistant to the President & Chair of the Council of Economic Advisers Cecilia Rouse, Assistant to the President & Director of the National Economic Council Brian Deese, listen during an event at the Roosevelt Room of the White House May 4, 2022 in Washington, DC. President Biden delivered remarks on economic growth, jobs, and deficit reduction. (Photo by Alex Wong/Getty Images)