SPECIAL REPORT- U.S. economy’s performance probably wasn’t the main culprit in Democrat losses

Leave a comment
Uncategorized

U.S. economy’s performance probably wasn’t the main culprit in Democrat losses

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks about jobs and the economy during a visit to Millennium Steel Service as part of Manufacturing Day in Princeton, Indiana October 3, 2014.  REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque

U.S. President Barack Obama speaks about jobs and the economy during a visit to Millennium Steel Service as part of Manufacturing Day in Princeton, Indiana October 3, 2014.

Nov 5 (Reuters) – – America’s underperforming economy has been an albatross for President Barack Obama since he took office in 2009 and likely did his Democratic party few favors in midterm elections on Tuesday – but it may not have been the decisive factor.

Hurt by Obama’s general unpopularity, Democrats lost control of the Senate while Republicans strengthened their hold over the House of Representatives. The economy may well have become less of an problem than Obama’s performance in addressing a broad range of issues.

While more Americans disapprove of the president’s handling of the economy than those who think he’s doing a good job, the economy wasn’t the bugbear it once was. Several months of wage gains and faster job creation improved Americans’ impression of Obama’s performance on the economy coming into the congressional polls.

One quarter of Americans strongly disapproved of Obama’s economic stewardship the day before the election, according to polling firm Ipsos. That was 10 percentage points lower than the average in September, and the smallest level of reproach since the online poll began in 2012. About 15 percent strongly approved of Obama on the economy, up from 10 percent two months ago.

“As far as the economy goes, the wind appears to be blowing slightly in the direction of the Democrats,” said Christopher Wlezien, a political scientist at University of Texas at Austin who has studied the role of the economy in elections.

U.S. employers have hired more than 200,000 workers in seven of the last eight months, and the jobless rate slipped below 6 percent in September for the first time since 2008.

To be sure, most Americans still earn less money than they did when Obama entered the White House, and a modest pickup in income growth since mid-year was too little, too late to have a major influence on the way people voted.

Edward Sanders, for example, cast his ballot in Raleigh, North Carolina for Republican Senate contender Thom Tillis, whose victory on Tuesday helped give Republicans a winning margin. Sanders, 59, had voted for incumbent Democrat Kay Hagan in 2008, but he has grown frustrated with the lackluster economy.

“I care about the economy and jobs, anything that will increase the average wage in this country,” he said.

Many political analysts say Obama’s low overall approval rating – which has hovered around 40 percent in Ipsos polling – was a major factor holding Democrats back on Tuesday.

James Campbell, a political scientist at the University of Buffalo SUNY, said the low rating was likely a reflection of years of subpar economic growth. The economy has grown at an average annual rate of 1.8 percent since 2009, below historical averages.

Others, however, say that Obama’s lack of popularity also draws from other factors, including his foreign policy and even his personal style.

When Ipsos asked voters which political party had a better plan for the economy – without considering a party’s leaders or candidates – Democrats had a roughly 3 percentage point lead over Republicans on Nov. 3.

RECOMMENDED

Carl Klarner, a political science researcher at Harvard, said that voters have in the past appeared to focus more on what’s happening in the economy immediately before an election – not longer-term trends. While Obama’s lack of popularity likely weighed on Democrats, he said, many voters were well aware that the economy has improved.

That included Republicans like Rob Bosworth whose vote for Republican Scott Walker helped the Wisconsin governor survive a challenge from Democrat Mary Burke.

“The economy is starting to turn with more substantial horsepower,” said Bosworth, who sells re-manufactured engraving equipment and was sipping a beer at a bar in Hudson, Wisconsin. “It’ll be interesting to see how things go moving forward with the Republican mandate.”

(Reporting by Jason Lange in Washington; Additional reporting by Todd Melby in Hudson, Wisconsin; and by Marti Maguire in Raleigh, North Carolina; Editing by Martin Howell)

Credit: Reuters/Kevin Lamarque

Advertisements
Posted by

I'am college graduate and father of three daughters; Jasmine Sherry 17, Rean 16, and Dana 14. Most of my employment years i spent in the restaurant management field. I worked for financial institutions as well at the same time in marketing and finance. My favorite job of all times is working for Taste Freeze as a fry and milk shake attendant. It was the atmosphere that i dig the best. People around me effect everything in my life, not the position. By the way i was 17 years of age then. Here and there i was involved in local politics, like the high school shut down because of a protest or a rally, and in college i got in trouble for bringing beer to the football game. I was a student Government and suppose to behave like a student Senator. I was in the spot lite as i excused myself, it was a brush and let go. I like student clubs, group, well we get to raise hell together after something like a project or a meeting. AISEC was my favorite. The international Association of Students In Business and Economics, it sound different in french. I went to grad School because my sisters drove me to it, one with a Master and the other beyond Grad School, and my employer paid for it, i ended up with an MBA in Marketing Management. I went on to work for both the public and the private Sector as a Marketing Coordinator representing the JTPA to everyone in seven Southeast Los Angeles County Cities. Press releases, and cities meeting were the top priorities of my work load agenda. We were funded by the State through the Federal act of Job Training Partnership Act, therefore we had to cater to the local politicians such as assemblymen, congressmen, and senators too, like what her name, Diane Feinstein and Miss Boxer. Funny I learn how to be real young, i mean very young, well extremely young as all those who like to post their high school photo for the public to recognize them, as local public officials told me to do so because that's how most people knew them. i like water sports, or hobbies like fishing, sailing, snorkeling, and just plain sit on a sandy beach, read, and dip in that water when i feel like it. Listen to music and enjoy people watching as well. It is amazing how much you can learn from watching others. That's what we were brought up doing anyway. Now i spent most of my times developing websites , writing, scouting for high quality contents and show time images, as i post on my digital publications. I consider myself lucky because i had great parents who devoted their time to raise me and looked after me to have education. i hope to continue making a difference in others for as much as i can, and as little as they comprehend and retain from any of my publications contents. I feel it is part of our life journey to contribute positive anything to everything around us.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s