Incomes, not jobs, could sink Obama re-election

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    Apr 04, 2011 5:42 PM GMT
    Obama is weak and that he remains the favorite to win, is a reflection of a lack of a nomination on the Republican side to date. Still, a lot could happen.

    http://blogs.reuters.com/james-pethokoukis/2011/04/02/incomes-not-jobs-could-sink-obama-re-election/

    The Obama 2012 presidential campaign, which has now officially sprung to life, confronts a vexing political puzzle. The unemployment rate is plummeting. After the March jobs report release, White House economic adviser Austan Goolsbee pointedly noted that the full percentage-point decline over the past four months is the largest such drop since 1984.

    That statistical coincidence dovetails neatly with this David Axelrod-endorsed narrative: Just as Ronald Reagan bounced back from a nasty first-term recession to win re-election in 1984, a jobs rebound will mean four more years for Barack Obama. Got that, MSM? Obama 2012 = Reagan 1984. Now shut your laptops and run along.

    But as the Obama political shop has surely noticed, the unemployment rate isn’t the only politically important number on the decline. Simultaneously, their boss’s approval rating has fallen from 51.0 percent on Jan. 24 to 47.4 percent today, according to the RealClearPolitics poll average. A large-sample Quinnipiac survey out last week had Obama at 42 percent. And a recent Reuters-Ipsos poll found that Americans’ confidence in the way the country is going has slumped to its lowest point of Obama’s presidency with 64 percent believing the nation is on the wrong track. Even as more jobs are being created, so are doubts about Obama.

    Keep in mind that forecasting models suggest a president with a 50 percent approval rating on Election Day has an 80 percent chance at re-election vs. just a one-in-three chance for an incumbent with a 45 percent rating. And polling analyst Nate Silver notes that every incumbent with an approval rating of 49 percent or higher since World War Two won re-election, while every candidate with a rating of 48 percent or lower lost.

    Morning in America 2.0, Mr. Axelrod? More like Threat Level: Midnight. And here’s why: While jobs are growing, incomes are not. And income growth — or the lack of it — political scientists agree, is the economic variable with the most impact on national elections. Strong growth in real disposable personal income led to huge victories for Reagan in 1984, Richard Nixon in 1972 and Lyndon Johnson in 1964. Weak or negative growth doomed Jimmy Carter in 1980, George Bush in 1992 and John McCain in 2008.

    Real disposable personal income fell 0.1 percent in February. Average hourly wages were flat in March, and have grown at a 1.8 percent annualized rate over the past three months, according to the Economic Policy Institute. With inflation running around 2 percent, this means the average American is falling behind, his standard of living dropping. As the Brooking Institution figures things, between October 2010 and February 2011, real hourly and weekly earnings in the private sector fell 1.1 percent.

    Even Goolsbee knows those numbers won’t improve a whole lot unless the unemployment rate moves sharply lower. Yet the official White House economic forecast has unemployment averaging 8.6 percent in 2012, not much below the current 8.8 percent rate. (The broader U-6 rate, which includes discouraged workers and part-timers who want full-time gigs, is a sickening 15.7 percent.) JPMorgan economist Michael Feroli thinks a combination of so-so economic growth, a vast pool of unemployed, higher energy prices and the expiration of the 2011 payroll tax cuts means income growth will likely remain “tepid” going forward.

    So for now, consider Obama a favorite to win a second term — most presidential incumbents do — but only by the narrowest of margins. If incomes stay stagnant — and if Republicans can nominate someone with a strong, passionate and specific pro-growth economic message — Election Night 2012 could be a long one.
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    Apr 04, 2011 5:54 PM GMT
    If Obama's smart, he will run on a message of economic populism whereby he can frame the falling incomes as the result of 30 years of "liberalism" and conservative economic policies, which he has begun to address. I'm not sure he's willing to take the hit in campaign contributions that such an argument would no doubt cost him, but it would have the advantage of being a) honest and b) addressing the understandable fears of most Americans.
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    Apr 04, 2011 6:34 PM GMT
    Nice topic from the same riddler that argued on another topic for LOWER wages for new entries to the work-force.

    Then we have Mock arguing for the removal of minimum wage, and whole slew of topics by a few others about gutting union wages and benefits.

    Ironic.
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    Apr 04, 2011 6:38 PM GMT
    meninlove said Nice topic from the same riddler that argued on another topic for LOWER wages for new entries to the work-force.

    Then we have Mock arguing for the removal of minimum wage, and whole slew of topics by a few others about gutting union wages and benefits.

    Ironic.


    Of course, you fail to mention that minimum wage discriminates against young people and low-skilled workers.
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    Apr 04, 2011 6:39 PM GMT
    meninlove said Nice topic from the same riddler that argued on another topic for LOWER wages for new entries to the work-force.

    Then we have Mock arguing for the removal of minimum wage, and whole slew of topics by a few others about gutting union wages and benefits.

    Ironic.


    Once gain, another disingenuous post from you. My point in the other topic was that by forcing workers to sell their time at a given rate results in fewer employed workers. You can't force wages up by fiat - otherwise why not set it at $100 or $200 and therefore the economic growth would soar? Quite simply, wage increases come from improvements to productivity.
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    Apr 04, 2011 6:41 PM GMT
    Disingenuous from you is a laugh.

    A lot of US companies are busy moving into Canada, where the minimum wages are higher, labour laws tougher, and the dollar is slightly higher than par.

    Target just bought all of Zellers for nearly two billion dollars.

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    Apr 04, 2011 6:47 PM GMT
    meninlove said Disingenuous from you is a laugh.

    A lot of US companies are busy moving into Canada, where the minimum wages are higher, labour laws tougher, and the dollar is slightly higher than par.

    Target just bought all of Zellers for nearly two billion dollars.


    I am curious - do you understand the world productivity or are you just saying something to say something in hopes that no one will notice? Further, I can't understand if you lack such a critical thinking as to believe that the purchase of Zellers by Target is an endorsement of our minimum wage policies?
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    Apr 04, 2011 6:49 PM GMT

    Connect the dots, if you can. I doubt you have that skill. You often argue for the sake of arguing, which is boring.

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    Apr 04, 2011 7:13 PM GMT
    meninlove said Disingenuous from you is a laugh.

    A lot of US companies are busy moving into Canada, where the minimum wages are higher, labour laws tougher, and the dollar is slightly higher than par.

    Target just bought all of Zellers for nearly two billion dollars.


    Perhaps this is evidence for Target's increased profit in the US, and their wish to expand business.
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    Apr 04, 2011 7:19 PM GMT
    James Pethokoukis is a rabid right-wing partisan.
    http://www.seiu.org/2008/11/here-we-go-again.php
    He has along history of extreme partisanship.

    And this piece continues his long history of propagandizing for the Republican party.

    This piece of shit article claims that Obama is in a weaker position for relection than Reagan was at the same point in his presidency, because Obama's poll numbers have fallen to an average of 47.4% recently.
    He neglects to mention (deliberately) that at this point in Reagan's presidency - REAGAN'S APPROVAL RATING WAS SIGNIFICANTLY LOWER THAN OBAMA'S.
    So, the actual fact is, that if we compare the approval ratings of Reagan and Obama - Obama is in a BETTER position for relection - NOT worse.
    And this piece of shit article is based on a deliberate LIE, that portrays things ass-backwards on purpose, in order to advance a partisan poiltical agenda.

    Here is PROOF that President Obama is doing significantly BETTER in the polls now than President Reagan was at the same point in his presidency.
    Contrary to the right-wing BS/LIES in this piece of shit article.
    http://blogs.e-rockford.com/applesauce/2011/03/20/time-for-another-obama-reagan-job-approval-comparison/

    This is yet more proof that the Repubs WILL SAY ANYTHING.
    DO NOT TRUST THEM TO TELL THE TRUTH.
    You need to fact-check everything they say.
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    Apr 04, 2011 7:20 PM GMT
    carminea said
    meninlove said Disingenuous from you is a laugh.

    A lot of US companies are busy moving into Canada, where the minimum wages are higher, labour laws tougher, and the dollar is slightly higher than par.

    Target just bought all of Zellers for nearly two billion dollars.


    Perhaps this is evidence for Target's increased profit in the US, and their wish to expand business.


    Thanks Caminea, very true. It's interesting that this company and others have absolutely no qualms about paying higher wages etc and Canadian taxes, unlike some of the more, er, dire posts I've seen that US business has been brought to its knees and can't afford a single penny more in wages and taxes.

    -Doug
  • Webster666

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    Apr 04, 2011 7:36 PM GMT
    Jobs/Unemployment are the ONLY benchmark.
    Add to that, that the Teabagger Republicans will put up a completely unacceptable candidate, and ..............................

    Obama wins, in a landslide.
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    Apr 04, 2011 7:39 PM GMT
    meninlove said
    Thanks Caminea, very true. It's interesting that this company and others have absolutely no qualms about paying higher wages etc and Canadian taxes, unlike some of the more, er, dire posts I've seen that US business has been brought to its knees and can't afford a single penny more in wages and taxes.

    -Doug

    No business is going to say they make enough money. Additionally, if that business is complaining it is not likely to expand. Target is a US company and it is making enough money to be able to expand. Any company that is looking to expand from the US is going to consider Canada before another country, say Mexico.

    Wages are a very low expense for businesses like Target. I doubt Canadian taxes for Target are too much higher than US taxes.

    Obama will win because there is no strong Republican nominee currently, and I can't think of a single one (Romney? Christie?) that might be popular enough. Keep in mind, the health care plan for everyone comes into being in 2014.
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    Apr 04, 2011 8:00 PM GMT
    If he takes action now before the election and helps to stop the war on workers, he will most likely get reelected. Workers don't like the Republicans right now because of their attack on worker's rights and because of the negative publicity they got here in Wisconsin with Walker's bill. This has made national news and the Republicans are viewed very negatively now across the country because of their attack on workers here. Workers are uniting all over the country and without the workers vote, a Republican president will never get elected. I think Walker really ruined it for the Republicans. People were turning over to the Republicans more, but after what happened here in Madison, it's now going back to the Democrats because people are really irrate over pushing this bill through against the will of the people. I'm really surprised the Republicans went ahead and did this because that's what turned many people off on the Democrats when they also passed Obama Care without the support of most Americans. When any party pushes things through against the will of the people, you are going to get kicked in the ass in the next election.
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    Apr 04, 2011 8:02 PM GMT
    Carminea said, "I doubt Canadian taxes for Target are too much higher than US taxes."

    lol, I have more than a sneaking suspicion they are. icon_wink.gif

    Mind you, they'll save hugely on healthcare contributions. If they pay half of an employee's costs they'll be paying (in this Province) 30 dollars a month. icon_wink.gif
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    Apr 04, 2011 8:11 PM GMT
    jockgymboy saidIf he takes action now before the election and helps to stop the war on workers, he will most likely get reelected. Workers don't like the Republicans right now because of their attack on worker's rights and because of the negative publicity they got here in Wisconsin with Walker's bill. This has made national news and the Republicans are viewed very negatively now across the country because of their attack on workers here. Workers are uniting all over the country and without the workers vote, a Republican president will never get elected. I think Walker really ruined it for the Republicans. People were turning over to the Republicans more, but after what happened here in Madison, it's now going back to the Democrats because people are really irrate over pushing this bill through against the will of the people. I'm really surprised the Republicans went ahead and did this because that's what turned many people off on the Democrats when they also passed Obama Care without the support of most Americans. When any party pushes things through against the will of the people, you are going to get kicked in the ass in the next election.




    Very well said.
    And it is surprising how frequently both parties forget that.
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    Apr 04, 2011 8:44 PM GMT
    Before all these attacks on workers, I thought Obama would never get reelected because people were turning against the Democrats over shoving this Obama Care down their throat. But now the Republicans did the very same thing with this bill on worker's rights, even though people made it very clear that they should wait and hold off with a vote like this and negotiate more to come to a better concensus. But, no they just shoved it through behind locked doors and now this will hurt their chances for getting a Republican president elected. They had the pendulum going their way last November, but now they are losing whatever gains they made before. Walker was really foolish because he really hurt the Republicans image big time over this whole ordeal. Americans don't like it when politicians don't take into consideration the feelings of the people they are suppose to represent and pass contentious bills like a bull in a china shop. In any organization, when there are contentious issues, you need to proceed slowly and allow lots of time for discussion to get better support. But neither party did this with these bills and they are both hearing about it and people remember this when it comes time for elections.,



    rickrick91 said
    jockgymboy saidIf he takes action now before the election and helps to stop the war on workers, he will most likely get reelected. Workers don't like the Republicans right now because of their attack on worker's rights and because of the negative publicity they got here in Wisconsin with Walker's bill. This has made national news and the Republicans are viewed very negatively now across the country because of their attack on workers here. Workers are uniting all over the country and without the workers vote, a Republican president will never get elected. I think Walker really ruined it for the Republicans. People were turning over to the Republicans more, but after what happened here in Madison, it's now going back to the Democrats because people are really irrate over pushing this bill through against the will of the people. I'm really surprised the Republicans went ahead and did this because that's what turned many people off on the Democrats when they also passed Obama Care without the support of most Americans. When any party pushes things through against the will of the people, you are going to get kicked in the ass in the next election.




    Very well said.
    And it is surprising how frequently both parties forget that.
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    Apr 04, 2011 8:51 PM GMT
    jockgymboy saidBefore all these attacks on workers,

    You keep enough drama with the term "attacks" but perhaps can give up a bit more drama in favor of greater accuracy if you say "public employee union workers" instead of "workers". You are implying a far greater "attack" than what actually exists.
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    Apr 04, 2011 9:04 PM GMT
    "Incomes, not jobs, could sink Obama re-election "


    ANYBODY the GOP pics for their Presidential candidate will SINK the GOP.icon_lol.gificon_lol.gificon_lol.gif
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    Apr 04, 2011 9:17 PM GMT
    socalfitness said
    jockgymboy saidBefore all these attacks on workers,

    You keep enough drama with the term "attacks" but perhaps can give up a bit more drama in favor of greater accuracy if you say "public employee union workers" instead of "workers". You are implying a far greater "attack" than what actually exists.


    The attacks - as they are rightly called - are not just on public employee union workers - but on all workers and labor. They are just starting with the most politically palatable.
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    Apr 04, 2011 9:56 PM GMT
    Christian73 said
    socalfitness said
    jockgymboy saidBefore all these attacks on workers,

    You keep enough drama with the term "attacks" but perhaps can give up a bit more drama in favor of greater accuracy if you say "public employee union workers" instead of "workers". You are implying a far greater "attack" than what actually exists.


    The attacks - as they are rightly called - are not just on public employee union workers - but on all workers and labor. They are just starting with the most politically palatable.

    Did you see their playbook? Did you get the plans for the concentration camps for workers being planned?
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    Apr 04, 2011 9:56 PM GMT
    Really. Well, SB it sure beats sounding like Anne Coulter, which you have down to an art form.
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    Apr 04, 2011 10:03 PM GMT
    Really. Well what did Art Deco have to do with this topic SB? Did he post in it? Nope. Did you bring him up in a derogatory way? Yep.

    Nice Anne Coulterish reply, btw. Thanks for proving my observation.

    Admin already yanked your attack on TigerTim. It's up to you.
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    Apr 04, 2011 10:18 PM GMT
    I just quoted your nasty little random insult on Art's topic about him and his partner, for everyone who has you on ignore. It also preserves it in case you try backtrack and erase your little stab.

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    Apr 04, 2011 10:47 PM GMT
    southbeach1500 said
    meninlove said I just quoted your nasty little random insult on Art's topic about him and his partner, for everyone who has you on ignore. It also preserves it in case you try backtrack and erase your little stab.



    You mean in the latest "Art" Deco "I'm so gay, I live in a wonderful gay ghetto called Wilton Manors, I do such wonderful things for the gays" topic?

    Bleh!




    You've contributed NOTHING to this thread but personal attacks, SB.
    And yet you have the self-delusion to whine that people are attacking you like some innovcent victim?

    FAIL