Byron Donalds: D.C. Policies Caused Labor Shortage and High Prices, Democrats Blame Corporations

By Lydia Nusbaum, Florida's Voice

September 23, 2022 Updated 10:52 AM ET

U.S. Rep. Byron Donalds (Gage Skidmore).
U.S. Rep. Byron Donalds (Gage Skidmore).

WASHINGTON D.C. (FLV) – As Democrats blame corporations blame high prices, for U.S. Rep. Byron Donalds said the “American Rescue Plan” led to a labor shortage, which in turn created high prices.

“That labor shortage has led to price increases because you had people who had the revenue and the disposable cash flow to buy goods, but not enough goods in circulation to purchase,” Donalds said.

Economist Tyler Godspeed, the minority witness, backed up Donalds’ statements.

Part of the “American Rescue Plan” delivered stimulus checks and allowed eligible families to receive an enhanced Child Tax Credit.

“I understand the majority party’s desire to try to put this on corporate America for raising prices, but if you do not have enough workers working, there’s not enough goods produced. If there’s not enough goods produced, but everybody still has money to go buy goods, the price of each unit actually goes up,” Donalds said.

U.S. REP. BYRON DONALDS: “Go down the pathway of providing dollars to people and they don’t have to exchange labor, which is the way our economy functions for money to pay for their goods and services. Do you think that leads to a labor shortage? Yes or no.”

ECONOMIST RAKEEN MABUD: “Like I said, I believe we’re experiencing a shortage of good jobs and a shortage of labor. And I think it’s really critical not to blame working people.”

U.S. REP. BYRON DONALDS: “I’m not blaming working people. What I would say is I’m blaming government policy… if you’re given free money, shoot, okay, cool. Most people just going to go ahead and take it. We know this. But if you had a legitimate economic choice to make at your kitchen table, I can go work 40 hours or I can go work 20 hours, and our living does not change, people have their own decision to make about what they’re going to do.”

The comments were heard at a Subcommittee on Economic and Consumer Police meeting Thursday.

The Democrat chairman said the committee would examine the “role that excess corporate price hikes have played on driving inflation.”

“Certain corporations and industries have increased prices under the guise of covering pandemic-related increases in costs, resulting in record-high profit margins even as many Americans struggle to make ends meet,” Democrat Chairman Rep. Raja Krishnamoorthi said.

The chair said the “price hikes” have an “outsized” impact on low-income communities and communities of color.

“Excess corporate price increases—the practice of corporations with market power raising prices more than is needed to offset higher costs—have emerged as another potent driver of inflation,” Krishnamoorthi said.

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