Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Kamala D. Harris on Monday dismissed the strong U.S. economy under President Trump by saying people are now forced to work multiple jobs to survive.
“Well yeah, people are working. They’re working two and three jobs,” Ms. Harris said at a town hall-style forum in Myrtle Beach, South Carolina. “In our American, you should only have to work one job to have a roof over your head and food on the table.”
She also brushed off the robust stock market as a poor indicator of the country’s economic health.
“That’s fine if you have stocks,” the California Democrat said, eliciting laughter and applause from the audience.
To end the need for people to work multiple jobs, Ms. Harris touted her plan for a refundable tax credit that would pay up to $500 a month to families earning less than $100,000 a year.
“That will be all the difference between being able to get to the end of the month with dignity or not,” she said.
Boosted by a tenacious performance in the Democrats’ first 2020 debate, Ms. Harris has surged into second place in the polls behind former Vice President Joseph R. Biden.
Her jabs at the economy sought to puncture Mr. Trump’s strongest arguments for his reelection next year.
She joins other Democratic hopefuls, including far-left champion Sen. Elizabeth Warren of Massachusetts, who have complained that the unemployment figures hide the reality of people working multiple jobs.
The percentage of Americans working in multiple jobs has hovered around 5% since 2010, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Last month, the federal data showed 5.1% of Americans worked more than one job. That was up slightly from 4.8% a year earlier.
However, the rate of people working multiple jobs has trended downward since peaking above 6% in the 1990s.
The U.S. unemployment rate edged up to 3.7% in June but remained near a 50-year low, according to the federal data.
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