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Tapper Confronts White House Economic Adviser Over Administration's Response to Rising Inflation

Photo by Colin Young-Wolff/Invision/AP

CNN’s Jake Tapper confronted Cecilia Rouse, the chair of the White House Council of Economic Advisors, on Wednesday about the administration’s plans to tackle inflation.  


Speaking about the recent Consumer Price Index report showing inflation reaching 9.1 percent in the last 12 months, Tapper asked Rouse why Biden officials don’t appear to be using the tools to tackle inflation they keep touting.

“There’s no question inflation is the number one economic challenge we’re facing in this country right now. That is why combatting inflation is the president’s number one priority,” Rouse said on “The Lead.”

Tapper wondered about cutting the tariffs put in place by his predecessor on Chinese goods, and asked whether there’s a reason for keeping them other than the fact that labor unions like them.  

“There’s a variety of estimates as to what the impact of rolling back the tariffs would have on the price levels. And we understand it would have at least a modest effect on price levels. But the president is reviewing the tariffs. It is complicated,” she said, adding that “it is part of the tools the president is considering deploying at this time.”

Tapper then pressed her about all the “tools” the administration keeps saying they have to fight inflation.


“I just feel like every month one of you nice people from the White House comes on the show to talk about inflation, and you talk about these tools in the president’s tool kit and you don’t use them,” he said. “You don’t use these tools. And you know, there’s debating and discussing going on, and meanwhile, prices are still going up.”

In addition to discussing how he’s in the Middle Easter working to encourage other countries to bring more oil to the market, Rouse also said the president has a number of other economic plans that could help.

"It’s a great time for Congress to act on these important economic initiatives," she said.

Tapper quickly reminded her Democrats control Congress. 

"He’s the Democratic president and the Congress is controlled by Democrats, so it’s not as though you don’t have each other’s phone numbers,” Tapper responded. 

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