New U.S. Census data shows a slight decrease in official poverty in 2018, but it also hides a darker reality.

The latest Census figures show this official poverty rate inching downward from 12.3 percent in 2017 to 11.8 percent last year. That means about 38.1 million Americans are below the official poverty line.

The White House Council of Economic advisers claims this new data shows Trump’s economic policies have lifted up those who had been “forgotten in the past.” In reality, the decrease is a cumulative result of a decade of recovery beginning under the Obama administration, which in 2015 oversaw the largest single annual drop in the official poverty rate since 1999. Moreover, huge racial disparities remain in income and wealth.

Read the full article at the Hill.

Karen Dolan directs the Criminalization of Race and Poverty Project at the Institute for Policy Studies.

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