Austan Goolsbee, who until recently served as Obama’s chief economic advisor, says that he wouldn’t have backed the failed “Cash for Clunkers” program if he had to do it all over again:
Former Obama administration economic adviser Austan Goolsbee said Thursday that if given a second chance he would not have backed the Cash for Clunkers program or the home buyer tax credit passed in 2009 to stave off further economic distress.
“Because we didn’t know if [economic recovery was] going to be short or long,” the Obama administration tried measures to address both scenarios, Goolsbee explained on MSNBC’s “Morning Joe.”
“If you look at Cash for Clunkers or the first home buyer tax credit, they were geared to trying to shift [recovery] from 2010 into 2009. Given it’s taken this long [to recover], I don’t think you would do that short-run stuff,” Goolsbee added.
Goolsbee, the former chairman of President Barack Obama’s Council of Economic Advisers, said the administration misjudged how quickly the country could recover from the economic damage of the 2008 economic collapse.
“It has proved a longer, tougher ride than we thought at the time,” Goolsbee said. “At the time we come in, it’s an awful, awful moment. We were losing 800,000 jobs a month and the economy is in a tough spot. There was a debate, and it continues now, of ‘Can we come back quickly from this?’”
While many apologists of President Barack Obama still defend Cash for Clunkers program, it’s clear that it was a failure and has had adversed effects; including driving up the cost of used cars on the market.