The change captures a shift in the party — also spurred by Trump — as Democrats pay more attention to powerful gestures and less to following the intellectuals and policy savants often perceived as out of touch with political currents. In the Obama administration, Summers helped shoot down some of then-Vice President Biden’s proposals to revive manufacturing for blue collar workers that he viewed as likely to prove ineffective, although the two worked together on the same side of the Detroit auto bailout. But critics say there are significant risks to this newer approach, pointing to soaring inflation — which Summers warned of, only to be ignored — as evidence.
“The economists are in a much more reactive position than they were in the Obama administration,” said one senior Biden administration official, speaking on the condition of anonymity to reflect internal dynamics. “They are being told, ‘Here’s what the policy is.’ There may be some flexibility to change things on the edges, but in general, by the time they weigh in, the policy has already been set.”
This article misses the point that Trump didn’t just make gestures for his audience, he created concrete benefits. Real wages for the least educated rose at the most significant rate in 50 years. In 2020, Trump crushed illegal immigration with his remain in Mexico program.