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June 19, 2004

The Economy: Bad News for John Kerry

A recent Pew Research Center report demonstrates that of all of the issues which Democrats want to hear about, the economy is the issue at the top of the list for John Kerry supporters. The economy tops the list for 36% of John Kerry supporters, followed by 23% who place the Iraq situation at the top. Health care and jobs/unemployment each are at the top for 7% of Kerry supporters, and education is at the top for 6% leaving just 21% for terrorism, gas prices/energy, foreign policy, taxes, morality/ethics, poverty/homeless, and elderly/medicare combined.

So if the economy is what is most important for John Kerry supporters, what do the latest readings of the economy mean to them?

Well, in Ohio, one of the important swing states, unemployment has taken a dip from 5.9% in April, to 4.9% in May, and now down to 4.7% this month.

Wisconsin, another important swing state, is also doing well, having added 41,000 new jobs since last year.

Washington State, which has an unfortunate jobless rate which is higher than the national average of 5.6% in May, dropped to 6.1% in May to continue a downward trend that began last fall.

Maine's unemployment rate, 4.9% in March, already below the national unemployment rate, dropped to just 4.3% in April.

Unemployment in Nevada fell to the lowest in nearly four years down to just 4.1%.

Democrats weren't amused when George Bush recently remarked to the National Federation of Independent Business about how about 1 million new jobs have been added to the economy. "We used to hear it said that America had a jobless recovery," quipped the President. "That term seems to have fallen out of use lately."

According to that same Pew Research Report, people who are likely to vote for John Kerry because he's not George Bush outnumber Kerry supporters who like Kerry, 3 to 2. By contrast, the pro-Bush George Bush supporters outnumber anti-Kerry Bush supporters by about 3 to 1. Kerry isn't well liked, the election seems to hang upon the population's approval/disapproval of George Bush, and the Democrat's number one issue, the economy, is in George Bush's corner. Add to that the effect of secondary issues, such as the "Bush lied" rhetoric favored by anti-Bush zealots, which has been dealt a devastating blow by Vladimir Putin yesterday confirming that, prior to the Iraq invasion, Russian agents had received information that Iraq's special forces were preparing terrorist attacks on the United States and on its military bases around the world, and you get America's large contingent of swing voters - who don't like to see their president of either party dragged through the muck - becoming less and less open to the anger of the far left.

What does this mean? Well, according to the same Pew Research Report, Americans are noticing, and 51% of Americans think that George Bush is going to win the election, verses only 35% who think that Kerry will come out on top.

Posted by Jeff at June 19, 2004 01:43 AM

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