Tuesday , October 27 2020
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The Declining Role of the CEA

Summary:
According to this article, Tomas Philipson, the acting chair of the Council of Economic Advisers who just resigned, has tested positive for Covid-19. What caught my eye in the article was this sentence: A White House official told the Journal that Trump and Philipson spent little time together, though the two were seen standing close to each other on June 5 at an event in the Rose Garden. When I was CEA chair, I was in the West Wing every day and would see the president two or three times a week, typically in the Oval Office or the Roosevelt Room (the conference room adjacent to the Oval). It is not a good sign if the CEA chair spends little time with the president, especially in light of the fact that the nation is now experiencing the deepest economic downturn since the Great

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According to this article, Tomas Philipson, the acting chair of the Council of Economic Advisers who just resigned, has tested positive for Covid-19. What caught my eye in the article was this sentence:
A White House official told the Journal that Trump and Philipson spent little time together, though the two were seen standing close to each other on June 5 at an event in the Rose Garden.
When I was CEA chair, I was in the West Wing every day and would see the president two or three times a week, typically in the Oval Office or the Roosevelt Room (the conference room adjacent to the Oval). It is not a good sign if the CEA chair spends little time with the president, especially in light of the fact that the nation is now experiencing the deepest economic downturn since the Great Depression. (Philipson's specialty, by the way, is health economics, which might have been useful under current circumstances.)
Greg Mankiw
I am the Robert M. Beren Professor of Economics at Harvard University, where I teach introductory economics (ec 10). I use this blog to keep in touch with my current and former students. Teachers and students at other schools, as well as others interested in economic issues, are welcome to use this resource.

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