Since President Trump insists that the press is too hard on him, I thought to look into some of the things he says the Fake News Media are ignoring, like the performance of the domestic economy. He seems especially proud of gains in stock prices and jobs while he's been in office.
Stocks are indeed up. Table. Since New Year's Day 2017, eight weeks after Trump's election and three weeks before his inauguration, the Dow Jones Industrial Average has risen from around 19,800 to (as I write this) 23,600, a gain of 19% in sixteen months. In contrast, over the eight years of the Obama presidency, the DJIA went from about 8,000 to just under 20,000. The year-by-year returns for Obama's eight years (rounded to the nearest whole percent) were: 19%, 11%, 6%, 7%, 27%, 8%, (-2%), 13%. Have Trump's policies been a great success or has the bull market simply continued apace? He crows most loudly about his deregulation regimen, so it seems fair to note that in this regard he is following the Republican line and rejecting the supposedly business-unfriendly Democratic one. But during W's eight years the DJIA actually retreated, whereas it was up dramatically under President Clinton. Stock market indices aren't a good way to judge the health of the economy, but, since Trump wants to play that way, it seems worth noting that the market's performance under Republican and Democratic administrations tends to undercut his boasting.
Similarly with job creation. In the first fourteen months of the Trump administration (February 2017 through March 2018), the economy added, on average, 183,000 new jobs per month. In the fourteen months before that (the last year and change of the Obama administration), it added an average of 203,000 jobs per month. Source is the US Department of Labor, Bureau of Labor Statistics. Of course, these numbers are open to criticism--lag time for policies to take effect, economic factors beyond the control of a president, et cetera, et cetera--but, again, I'm just accepting the premise of Trump's boasting. He says his policies have led to an explosion in job growth, a claim contradicted by data. Nor is it the case that "the big picture" supports the view that Republican administrations have spurred job growth by "getting government off the back of job creators," while "the regulatory state" favored by Democrats is a proven job killer. Of the last five presidents, job growth was strongest under Clinton, followed in order by Reagan, Obama, George H W Bush, and, bringing up the rear, George W Bush.