USA Today/Gallup poll shows increasing despair over Obama’s economy
No hope here. But lots of change, and for the worse, in a poll taken last week:
Eight of 10 say the economy is in a recession, and nearly as many say it hasn’t improved over the past year. Even more ominous: Six in 10 predict the economy a year from now will be the same or worse than today, a downturn from the public’s views last year and the year before.
In the USA TODAY survey, the public’s economic expectations were reversed from where they stood two years ago, soon after economists calculated the recession officially had ended. In September 2009, 65% predicted the economy would be better in a year; 35% said it would be about the same or worse.
Now, 37% say things will be better in a year; 61% say they will be the same or worse.
While a third of the respondents still attribute some of the blame to President Bush, that particular Democrat talking point is fading:
Twenty-four percent say Obama deserves a great deal of the blame, up 10 points since 2009. For the first time since he took office, a majority of Americans — including six in 10 independents — say he deserves a great deal or moderate amount of blame for the nation’s economic woes.
“The blame-it-on-my-predecessor line is of decreasing help to an incumbent,” says political scientist William Mayer of Northeastern University. “It was perfectly fine when he took office, and even reasonable a year or two in, but eventually, increasingly, it becomes Obama’s economy.
I think Obama pushed the blame-it-on-Bush string much too long. About two years too long. When you campaign on vague promises of hope and change, as the savior of an economy that was teetering on disaster, there had better be solid improvements in people’s economic well-being, relatively quickly. Especially after you made it a point to tell everyone that your predecessor’s economic policies failed, with the implication being that yours are so much better.
So much for that.