--Barack Obama, Fundraiser remarks, 4.14.11
There is something disturbing about a president wrapped up in the trappings of his office, at a time of such serious economic difficulty. In any case, President Obama’s job approval/disapproval ratings are upside down once again, and have been since April 7. This according to the RealClearPolitics average, which daily tracks the President’s job approval. Obama’s job approval rating has also stayed below 47% for the last two weeks. Presidents with ratings below 47% don’t get re-elected. People in politics follow Presidential job approval ratings the way stock traders follow the Dow, and Obama’s lower ratings are affecting news coverage, not to mention the power balance between the White House and Congress.
As we reported here, the picture earlier this year looked brighter for Obama. The above chart starts in January 2011. Obama’s numbers rose following his compromise with Republicans last December on extending the Bush tax cuts, and peaked in the aftermath of his mid-January “president of all of us” speech concerning the Tucson Massacre that gunned down Democratic Congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords. His more partisan State of the Union speech 11 days later, during which he offered no constructive solutions to our debt/deficit crisis, began the downward slope that has put him upside down and below 47% once again, where he was most of last year.
Besides his job approval ratings, there is another crucial number for Obama: the unemployment rate of 7.8% [LNS14000000], when he took office in January, 2009. Currently, 13,542,000 [LNS13000000] are unemployed, against a civilian employed total of 139,864,000 [LNS12000000]. To get back to 7.8% unemployment, the economy would have to create 2,633,000 jobs, or 146,250 a month for 18 months. Obama can do it, unless the workforce—those looking for work—starts growing again. That would mean the economy will have to crate even more jobs to lower the unemployment rate to 7.8%.
Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan thinks Democrats have already given up on the economy, and are putting their eggs in the “savage the GOP nominee” basket:
Democratic professionals. . . hope that in a mood of antic cultural pique, or in a great acting out of disdain for elites, or to annoy the mainstream media, Republican voters will [nominate a presidential candidate] unacceptable to . . . the great and vital center, which hires and fires presidents. [emphasis added]