This article appeared online at TheNewAmerican.com on Wednesday, May 23, 2018:
America’s recovery from both the Great Recession and the oppression of the Obama years has shown up not only in the numbers but in attitudes, both economic and political. And with that improvement, talk of the “blue wave” taking over the House of Representatives by the Democrats in November has virtually disappeared.
The numbers are remarkable, as The New American and other real news outlets have repeatedly reported. Job growth, unemployment, and even poverty levels have all benefited from the release of pressure from the central government under the Trump administration. Job openings are the highest since 2000, unemployment is at 3.9 percent and falling, and real (inflation-adjusted) wages are improving. According to Sentier Research, “Median household income in April of this year was higher than for any other month since January 2000 [and] 12.9 percent above the post-recession low point [in] June 2011.”
A report from the Census Bureau on income and poverty levels already showed great improvement during the last two years of the Obama administration, as shown below, but Obama reigned over the slowest economic recovery since the Great Depression. Trump has simply supercharged the economy during his time in office.
Real median household income increased 3.2 percent between 2015 and 2016, the second consecutive annual increase;
The number of full-time year-round workers increased by 2.2 million in 2016;
The official poverty rate decreased by 0.8 percentage points between 2015 and 2016; and
The number of people in poverty fell by 2.5 million between 2015 and 2016.
All of which is showing up in polls measuring Americans’ attitudes. The Investor’s Business Daily (IBD)/TIPP Economic Optimism Index remains significantly above 50 (anything above 50 is optimistic), while its Quality of Life Index hit a 14-year high in May and its Financial Stress Index is at an all-time low.
Gallup reports that two out of three Americans say that now is a good time to find “a quality job in the U.S.,” the highest since Gallup started asking 17 years ago. CNN reports that 57 percent of those polled say that “things are going well in the U.S.,” up from 49 percent in February.
And according to the latest CBS poll, more than two out of three Americans think President Trump deserves at least some of the credit.
RealClearPolitics (RCP) has been tracking how the 2018 congressional vote is reflecting Americans’ opinions, positing a generic Republican against a generic Democrat in all 435 House races. In December the Democrats were enjoying a 13 percent advantage over the Republicans. Thanks to the booming economy, that advantage has all but disappeared. In RCP’s tracking of polls, the Democrats’ lead has shrunk to three percent, with two of the last five polls (Rasmussen and Reuters) showing the Democrats with just a one point advantage.
Even that may appear to be too generous. Every week Reuters conducts its own survey, and the last one for the week ending May 20 shows the generic Republican candidate with 39 points and his generic Democrat opponent with 36.7 points.
While it’s still a long way to November, momentum both in the economy and in Americans’ attitudes toward the midterm elections continues increasingly to favor the Republicans. A Google search for “Democrat Blue Wave” shows only articles questioning its inevitability.