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Trust Index: Fact-checking Biden’s economic promises, auto jobs

Former Vice President Joe Biden’s town hall Thursday night was largely policy-oriented, especially on matters of jobs and the economy, which is why it’s where we’re starting Biden’s plan for economic recovery.

“Wall Street said I will create 18.6 million new jobs, good paying jobs. Number one. The GDP will grow by $1 trillion more than under Trump and seven million more jobs than under Trump,” Biden said.

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The former vice president is accurately quoting a report published late last month by Moody’s Analytics, but it needs some explaining. In that report the Wall Street rating agency said in the best case scenario for Biden, which is Democrats win the White House the Senate and the House, Joe Biden’s plan for the economy would create 18.6 million jobs, 7.4 million more than under a Trump best case scenario.

It also predicts a $1 trillion dollar increase to overall GDP. It is worth noting Moody’s gave a Democratic sweep 1 in 5 in five chance this year.

Next is this claim about his plans for the auto industry.

“Electric vehicles will save billions of gallons of oil and will create 1 million, not me, Wall Street (says), automobile jobs,” Biden told one audience member.

We’re rating this one “be careful” because we couldn’t find an exact Wall Street analysis of Biden’s claim, so this is difficult to test which also makes it difficult to prove or disprove.

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According to his campaign website, his plan promise to deliver one million new auto jobs relies on changing over the federal government’s fleet of three million vehicles to electric faster than the current plan, adding 500,000 charging stations along and incentives for both companies and customers to buy into electric vehicles.

The Biden plan doesn’t offer any specifics on how that would work and skeptics have said the switch over to electric vehicles without federal help could actually cost the industry jobs. That being said, major automakers have already invested billions into electric vehicle production and the plan was endorsed by the United Auto Workers union.

Even with his plan, most forecasts show major disruptions in the auto industry because of electric and autonomous vehicles by 2030, so it’s also unclear just how much any president could do to make a major impact on an already changing industry.

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