A senior White House figure has been scorned by conservatives for suggesting that current supply chain issues in the US were an issue only for “high class” Americans.
White House chief of staff Ron Klain on Wednesday retweeted a Harvard professor who wrote that issues in supply and employment were “high class problems”.
“Most of the economic problems we're facing (inflation, supply chains, etc.) are high class problems,” wrote Jason Furman, a professor who previously served as a White House economic adviser under Barack Obama.
“We wouldn't have had them if the unemployment rate was still 10 per cent. We would instead have had a much worse problem”.
It came within hours of Mr Klain writing that supply chain issues were “like many other problems we have inherited” – suggesting that the Trump administration was at fault.
The remarks were ridiculed by conservatives who claimed that supply chain issues were also hurting the poor and middle class.
"Struggling to pay for food, fuel, and housing because of rising prices is not a ‘high class problem,’" wrote Tommy Pigott, the rapid response director for the Republican National Committee, in a tweet.
"Biden is making everyone worse off, but instead of stopping the damage, their strategy is to try to gaslight Americans."
Conservative columnist Derek Hunter also tweeted: “Yep, a lack of truck drivers and the influx of millions of illegal aliens are ‘high class problems’ that only impact the rich.”
“Same thing with the price of steak and gas, they really only impact rich whitey. Shut up and eat your gruel, you don't know how good you have it, loser.”
Addressing issues with supplies on Wednesday, US president Joe Biden said he was working to get the Port of Los Angeles operating around the clock to accommodate a record level of imports – spurred by consumer demand.
A number of chains including Walmart and Target have also vowed to work 24/7 to move goods.
It comes amid a global shortage in workers and supply chains, which have hit China, Vietnam and the UK in recent weeks.
Join our commenting forum
Join thought-provoking conversations, follow other Independent readers and see their replies