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Lil’ Fast? McConnell Takes Credit For Economic Gains Two Days Into New Congress

Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell credited the new Republican Congress with recent economic improvements in a statement Wednesday outlining the Senate’s legislative priorities.

“After so many years of sluggish growth, we’re finally starting to see some economic data that can provide a glimmer of hope,” McConnell said. “The uptick appears to coincide with the biggest political change of the Obama administration’s long tenure in Washington: The expectation of a new Republican Congress.”

The economy grew 5 percent in the third quarter of 2014, and unemployment is relatively low at 5.8 percent. President Obama boasted of 57 straight months of job growth in December, and 10.9 million new private sector jobs. (RELATED: White House Urges Congress Not To Screw Up Economic Gains)

McConnell didn’t offer any evidence to support his claim that the improvements are related to expectation of a Republican-controlled Congress, but said the Senate would work to pass pro-growth agenda that focuses on jobs and the middle class.

“Some of the measures the new Congress passes may seem significant,” he said. “Others may seem modest. That’s OK. As we’ve seen in recent years, a bigger bill doesn’t always mean a better bill.”

McConnell said he hopes to work with Obama, but is skeptical of his willingness or ability to compromise.

“The president’s supporters are pressing for militancy these days, not compromise,” he said. “They’re demanding the comforts of purity over the duties of progress.”

“And across the Atlantic, they see the sun setting on the social-democratic idea,” he continued. “They see tragic legacies of welfare states: empty promises and fear of the future.”

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