(IBD) — The economy shrank last quarter, the deficit topped $1 trillion last year, U.S. debt shot up $5 trillion in the past four, and joblessness is at 7.8%. Boy, President Obama sure inherited an economic mess, didn’t he?

According to the Bureau of Economic Analysis, the economy “unexpectedly” declined 0.1% in last three months of 2012, the first decline since early 2009.

The Obama administration, naturally, tried to look for scapegoats, this time settling on Hurricane Sandy and Republican-induced uncertainty over the “fiscal cliff” outcome.

But if that were the case, why was the administration running around late last year telling everyone how great the economy was doing?

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