The average U.S. worker has lost $3,400 in annual income as a result of skyrocketing inflation since President Biden took office nearly 18 months ago.
Overall, the Consumer Price Index, a key inflation measurement, surged 9.1% year-over-year in June, a more-than-expected increase that marked its highest level since November 1981, according to a Bureau of Labor Statistics report Wednesday. The decline amounts to a roughly $3,400 yearly income decrease for the average worker and a $6,800 reduction for families in which both parents work, E.J. Antoni, a research fellow at The Heritage Foundation, told FOX Business.
"There are plenty of families that that's more than their food budget a year," Antoni told Fox Business in an interview. "I can't emphasize enough how much this is really crushing consumers."
"It's truly crushing the middle class and then the White House spokesperson says these garbage lines like ‘the economy is in transition,’" he continued. "Transition in the same sense, I suppose, that an iceberg transitioned the Titanic into a submarine."
The report showed that energy prices, including gasoline and electricity, have skyrocketed 41.6% year-over-year while food prices have risen 10.4% over the last 12 months. The energy index increase was its largest jump since 1980.
Antoni also noted that core inflation, which measures the change in consumer price across all sectors except the volatile energy and food sectors, rose a whopping 5.9%.
"What we are seeing now is those [food and energy] costs are finally being passed on to other businesses and then, ultimately, to consumers," he told Fox Business. "That's why they're being borne out in the core prices."
Republican lawmakers, meanwhile, slammed Biden following the report Wednesday for the president's agenda, which they blamed for the high consumer prices.
"One year ago this week President Biden’s reckless stimulus checks began flooding the economy, and we are seeing the result: Inflation is raging and getting worse, forcing massive paycuts for American families," House Ways and Means Committee Ranking Member Kevin Brady said in a statement Wednesday.
According to Antoni's calculation, inflation has effectively erased the money Americans received from federal stimulus checks during the pandemic. The federal government sent three stimulus payments — worth $1,200, $600 and $1,400 respectively — between March 2020 and March 2021.
"How much more must Americans suffer at the expense of President Biden’s reckless and dangerous policies?" House Financial Services Ranking Member Patrick McHenry tweeted.