An unexpected bump up in inflation is giving former President Trump more ammunition to fire at President Biden as the two face off in their 2024 election rematch.

After the Labor Department reported on Wednesday that the consumer price index – a broad measure of the cost of everyday goods such as gas and groceries, as well as rent – rose 0.4% in March, Trump took aim at Biden.

“INFLATION is BACK—and RAGING!,” the former president emphasized in a post on his social media platform.

And speaking with reporters an hour later as he arrived in Atlanta, Georgia, for the first of two campaign fundraising events, Trump argued, “Biden has totally lost control of inflation. It’s back. It’s raging back.”

WHY INFLATION IS ACCELERATING HIGHER THAN EXPECTED 

The consumer price index was higher than the 0.3% many economists had expected. Gas, rent, and car insurance helped push the overall inflation numbers higher.

The monthly rate nudged the year-over-year increase in inflation to 3.5%, which was also slightly over expectations.

The index has ticked higher than anticipated nearly every month since last autumn, which is unwelcome news for the president as he runs for re-election. 

WHAT BATTLEGROUND STATE VOTERS TOLD FOX NEWS ABOUT THE ECONOMY

Economic growth – as measured by the gross domestic product – has been steady during Biden’s tenure in the White House and new jobs have soared, keeping unemployment low. 

But high prices have wounded the president politically and prevented Biden from getting much credit for the economy, which is a top issue on the minds of American voters.

President Biden campaigns in Nevada and Arizona - two crucial western battleground states

While recent public opinion polling indicated that consumer confidence was beginning to build, the president’s approval rating on handling the economy remains well underwater. And surveys have also indicated that many Americans have a fond memory of economic conditions during the Trump presidency.

“I’m calling on corporations, including grocery retailers, to use record profits to reduce prices,” the president said in a statement following the inflation report’s release.

“Congressional Republicans want to slash taxes for billionaires and big corporations, while helping special interests and Big Pharma raise prices. I won’t let them,” Biden emphasized.

The president has repeatedly blamed large corporations and congressional Republicans for the continued high prices.

The stock markets didn’t appreciate the inflation report, and the major indexes were all down. Analysts predicted that the news would also delay any move by the Federal Reserve to cut interest rates.

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