National Press Club

Kudlow lauds economic expansion, says Trump policies will bring more growth

April 23, 2019 | By Lorna Aldrich | lorna2@verizon.net

Larry Kudlow, White House National Economic Council Director, receives a National Press Club coffee mug, from Club President Alison Fitzgerald Kodjak at an April 23 Headliners luncheon.

Larry Kudlow, White House National Economic Council Director, receives a National Press Club coffee mug, from Club President Alison Fitzgerald Kodjak at an April 23 Headliners luncheon.

Photo/Image: Cheriss May

Larry Kudlow, director of the inter-agency National Economics Council in the Trump administration, cheered continued economic expansion since the 2008 recession with a stream of economic statistics and indicators at a National Press Club Headliners Luncheon on Tuesday in the Holeman Lounge.

Kudlow credited Trump administration policies for his expectation of continued good news on the economy and stuck by his prediction of 3% growth, while acknowledging many mainstream economists disagree.

President Donald Trump is rebuilding the economy by changing psychology with his exuberance and optimism and by policies, Kudlow said

“He ended the war on business. He ended the war on success. He believes strongly that if you do well and succeed, you should be rewarded, not punished,” Kudlow said.

He cited lowering taxes, reducing regulation and curbing the war on energy and fossil fuels as further accomplishments. Blue collar wages are rising and women made the biggest contribution to the economy last year, he said. That wave of prosperity, he said, would whither if Democrats succeed in enacting policies for universal health care and basic income. Such policies, he said, could cut GDP by 15%.

“Socialism is a loser,” he said.

Adding that he opposed Obama Care and still does, he nevertheless said, “I love Medicare,” in which he participates. He likes his Federal Blue Cross/Blue Shield policy.

He answered questions on a range of specific issues and policies.

On deficits, he said, “Growth solves lots of problems....It also solves fiscal problems.”

“We are looking for downward fly paths of deficits to GDP,” he said.

On the U.S., Mexico, Canada renegotiation of the North American Free Trade Agreement, signed by chief executives but not ratified by legislatures, he said, “I love USMCA.”

On the border, he described the present situation as an emergency of wall breaking, drug trafficking, child trafficking, humanitarian issues and subversion of American laws. “It needs to be fixed,” he said. "The president is working on it.”

”We would like to move to a merit-based system as many other countries have. We would like to move away from a family-chain base,” he said.

On China trade negotiations, he said progress was being made. The tariffs, he said, brought the Chinese to the table. While he admitted the tariffs damaged some areas of the economy and harmed some industries, Kudlow said such costs were “manageable.”