President Joe Biden’s economic advise, Jared Bernstein, clashed with former President Barack Obama’s economic adviser on Friday over the size and scope of the proposed $1.9 billion coronavirus rescue plan.
In an op-ed published in The Washington Post, Summers questioned whether Biden’s proposed package would spark more inflation, warning of “consequences for the dollar and financial stability.”
“With respect to Larry and his piece, it’s just flat out wrong that our team is ‘dismissive’ of inflationary risks,” Bernstein protested when asked about the op-ed during the White House press briefing Friday.
He reminded Summers that former Federal Reserve board member Janet Yellen was part of Biden’s team calling for dramatic stimulus.
“I mean, Janet Yellen is our Treasury Secretary, okay?” he asked. “She knows a little something about inflationary risks and has tracked that economic issue forever.”
The debate between the two Democrat economic advisers demonstrated the split between Biden’s empowered leftist advisers versus more respected classic liberal Democrat economists.
Summers was also Treasury secretary during former President Bill Clinton’s administration.
Summers warned that Biden was spending fifteen percent of GDP in his stimulus but did not include enough public investments to rebuild the economy.
But Bernstein signaled confidence that President Biden could work with Republicans to move forward on more infrastructure spending after the pandemic was over.
I am confident that we work on rescue now, we’ll get to recovery next,” he said.