aside August 2017 Poll Numbers Give The US Congress Members Failing Grades (Economic Issues)

Image result for photos of marches for tax fairness / jobs

Can you believe that Americans of both the democratic and the republican parties rate those lawmakers serving in the US Congress with lower favorability grades than even the unpopular republican President Donald Trump?

It is my opinion that neither party truly gets why there were enough Americans who backed Donald J. Trump, to where he squeaked out enough votes to become the 45th US president, to the shame of most of us.

Average Americans have lived with “POLITICAL SPEAK” for decades through both democratic and republican presidential administrations, where there were both majority and minority parties in the US Congress. No matter, who they have voted for, their lot in life has not benefited from measurable improvements.

After the 2008 US financial meltdown where millions of American peoples suffered real economic set backs, US businesses have bounced back and benefited from record profits to where investors, shareholders and company executives have had their wealth increased exponentially, but this was at the expense of the American front-line workers who were cut out from a share of the spoils.

As per Wikipedia, “Income inequality in the United States has increased significantly since the 1970s after several decades of stability, meaning the share of the nation’s  income received by higher income households has increased.”

Image result for cartoons about income disparityHow clueless can the party leaders be when they have no idea how their constituents truly feel.? Yet every-time the registered voters are polled, they are expressing their anger in the form of low favorability numbers for both the republican and democratic parties, which at times are even lower than President Trump’s numbers.

For the Democratic party leaders, their plans to figure out how to deliver a better message is not an adequate solution to winning back the majority of elected office positions, again. The American peoples have heard it all. They have lost hope and are angry.

Image result for cartoons about income disparityBelow are reports are on the latest voter polling results and how the lot of the American worker has remained stagnant over decades. Here’s the rest of the story…

On August 9, 2017, Justin McCarthy of Gallup Polls reported on the latest numbers, “Republicans’ Approval of Congress Drops to New 2017 Low.”

Republicans' Approval of Congress Drops to New 2017 Low

STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • Republicans’ approval down 12 percentage points since July, to 16%
  • Approval of Congress among U.S. adults decreased four points, to 16%
  • Lowest overall job approval rating since July 2016

“Despite their party controlling both chambers of Congress, only one in six Republicans (16%) approve of the job Congress is doing, the lowest yet in 2017. GOP approval has sharply declined this legislative session as congressional Republicans have struggled to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act.”

Graph 1

“Democrats (12%) are nearly as likely as Republicans to approve of the job Congress is doing. However, unlike Republicans, Democrats have given Congress fairly low ratings throughout 2017, ranging from 10% to 19%.”

“The latest ratings, collected Aug. 2-6, come as Congress goes on recess without delivering an ACA repeal. The legislative body also has yet to reveal plans to fund the nation’s infrastructure or reform the federal tax system, among other things. Members are returning home for the recess with little to show for their months in Washington.”

“Half of Republicans rated the legislative branch positively in February, a few weeks into the 115th session — but this gradually dipped before plateauing around the 30% mark from April to July. The latest rating is a new 2017 low in Republicans’ views of this Congress.”

GOP Disappointment Drives Overall Approval Down

“On a national basis, 16% of U.S. adults approve of Congress, statistically similar to the 20% recorded in July but the lowest rating the body has received to date in 2017. This is also the lowest rating Congress has received since the 13% job approval recorded in July 2016.”

“The slight dip in the national rating in August is driven almost entirely by Republicans. Democrats’ approval has remained the same, and approval among independents has slipped four percentage points to 16%.”

Graph 2

Bottom Line

“Several unsuccessful attempts by Congress this year to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act did nothing to bolster its already poor image. Some Americans — in particular, Democrats — oppose repealing the ACA.  Many others, mostly Republicans, are likely disappointed that Congress has been unable to deliver on its long-promised repeal.”

“When members return from recess, they might find their attempts at less contentious measures, such as boosting infrastructure funding, more appealing to Americans — which could ultimately improve their approval rating. Other controversial issues, such as raising the debt ceiling and adopting spending bills, are unavoidable. Disagreement or inaction on these matters could leave Congress similarly unpopular.”

 

 

Image result for cartoons about income disparity

OCT. 2014 REPORT

The job growth and wage increase for the middle class and the average worker has been stagnant for 25 plus years. This is in spite of the record profits being made by the big corporations with the CEO pay being too often in excess of 250% more than their average front-line workers. The top 1% in the earning scales have seen their annual incomes increased by double digit percentage points along with jack pot bonuses.

According to a 2012 March study by the Center for Economic and Policy Research, minimum wage should have reached $21.72 an hour in 2012 if it kept up with increases in worker productivity. While advancements in technology have increased the amount of goods and services that can be produced in a set amount of time, wages have remained flat-lined.

Even if the minimum wage kept up with inflation since it peaked in real value in the late 1960s, low-wage workers should be earning a minimum of $10.52 an hour, according to the study. Five years later, I am estimating that the minimum wage rate should be at least $14.00 per hour.

 

Image result for cartoons about income disparity

The following are some publications regarding the wage disparity:

CEO Pay Continues to Rise as Typical Workers Are Paid Less   http://www.epi.org/…/ceopay-continues-to-rise/ Economic Policy Institute by D Jones..Jun 12, 2014 –

CEOs earn 354 times more than average worker – CNN Moneymoney.cnn.com/2013/04/15/news/…/ceopayworker Apr 15, 2013 – The discrepancy in pay between CEOs and the average worker has skyrocketed over the years.. 

Fast-Food CEOs Make 1,000 Times the Pay of the Average …http://www.businessweek.com/…/fast-food-ceos-making…Apr 22, 2014 – The pay gap between the top CEOs and the average workers at their companies is about 331 to 1. 

The pay gap between CEOs and workers is much worse … http://www.washingtonpost.com/…/the-paygapbetweenceo…The Washington Post Sep 25, 2014

Image result for photos of janet yellen

As per NBC News report, published on 10/17/2014, even Janet Yellen, Chair of the Federal Reserve shared her thoughts over this topic as reflected in the title: “Fed Chief Janet Yellen: Income Inequality ‘Greatly Concerns’ Me.” She shared at a conference on inequality at the Boston branch of the central bank, the following commentary:“I think it is appropriate to ask whether this trend is compatible with values rooted in our nation’s history, among them the high value Americans have traditionally placed on equality of opportunity,” she said. “The extent of and continuing increase in inequality in the United States greatly concerns me.”

“She commented that the wealth gap is at the widest its been in the past 100 years.  In addition, she mentioned skyrocketing college tuitions and the tightening of lending by financial institutions as contributing factors. She continues: “It is no secret that the past few decades of widening inequality can be summed up as significant income and wealth gains for those at the very top and stagnant living standards for the majority.” 

Image result for cartoons about income disparityOn October 9, 2014, Drew DeSilver of Pew Research penned the following report, “For most workers, real wages have barely budged for decades.”

Excerpts:

“But a look at 5 decades’ worth of government wage data suggests that the better question might be, why should now be any different? For most U.S. workers, real wages — that is, after inflation is taken into account — have been flat or even falling for decades, regardless of whether the economy has been adding or subtracting jobs.”

Image result for cartoons about income disparity“But after adjusting for inflation, today’s average hourly wage has just about the same purchasing power as it did in 1979, following a long slide in the 1980s and early 1990s and bumpy, inconsistent growth since then. In fact, in real terms the average wage peaked more than 40 years ago: The $4.03-an-hour rate recorded in January 1973 has the same purchasing   power as $22.41 would (in 2014).” (Note that the minimum wage rate of $7.25 per hour has not been increased since 2009.)

“A similar measure, “usual weekly earnings” of employed, full-time, wage and salary workers, tells the same story, albeit over a shorter time period. In seasonally adjusted current dollars, median usual weekly earnings rose from $232 in the first quarter 0f 1979 (when the series began) to $782 in the second quarter of this year (the most recent data available). But in real terms, the median has barely budged over that period.”

“What gains have been made, have gone to the upper income brackets. Since 2000, weekly wages have fallen 3.7% (in real terms) among workers in the lowest tenth of the earnings distribution, and 3% among the lowest quarter. But among people near the top of the distribution, real wages have risen 9.7%.”

Image result for cartoons about income disparity

“Wage stagnation has been a staple of economic analysis for a while now, though perhaps predictably there’s little agreement about what’s driving it.” (While companies have been making record profits and productivity increases, American workers have been cut out of the reaping of the spoils, which has been limited to companies’ executives and shareholders.

“In a Pew Research Center survey from August, 56% of Americans said their family’s income was falling behind the cost of living, up from 44% in September 2007 — just before the recession hit. More than a third (37%) of Americans in the latest poll said their family’s income was staying about even with inflation; only 5% said they were staying ahead of inflation.”

5 comments

  1. Gronda, there are over 30 states and numerous municipalities that have a minimum wage higher than the federal. At the least, the federal minimum wage needs to be increased to a living wage for one person and then indexed. That would put it just over $10 for now. Arguments against cite job loss and impacting teens mostly. Yet, the median age of minimum wage earners I recall is around 24 and the CBO said such an increase would only impact negatively about 500,000 jobs while helping over twelve times that amount. As you go higher, more job losses would occur, so there has to be more study. Keith

    • Dear Keith,

      To encourage businesses to hire young peoples, I would not be opposed to an increase to the minimum hourly wage except for those under 18 years of age.

      The last federal wage increase was in 2009. These peoples are due a pay adjustment at least to $10.25 per hour to be increased to by $.50 for each yr. with an upper limit. There are reasonable solutions without poor folks having to wait for another study.

      Hugs, Gronda

  2. I admit I was surprised to find that Congress’ approval rating is even lower than Trump’s among republicans. The republicans in Congress, with very few exceptions, have been licking Trump’s boots, bending over backward to do his bidding, so from the viewpoint of republicans, they should love their Congress as much as they love their Trumpy. I notice that DDT’s approval rating increased from 36.9% last week to 37.8% this week. I can only conclude it was because he let it be known that he would rescind DACA. Else they were impressed by him making two ridiculously self-focused trips to Texas. Some may have even fallen for his claim that he is donating $1 million to the hurricane relief effort, not realizing that the donation, IF it even happens, will come from his foundation to which he has contributed NOTHING for years now! If the republicans are against Congress because they did not pass that abomination of a “health care” bill, then they are even shorter sighted and less savvy than I thought! Hugs, my friend!!!

    • Dear Jill,

      I do get why the US Congress is so unpopular. It is a sad state of affairs when both houses are less popular than DDT who is pretty darn unpopular. Remember that it was these republican lawmakers who helped DDT to become president. How dysfunctional is that!

      It was the democratic party who failed HRC in a number of ways. The DNC failed to provide adequate security for its internet systems. In my opinion, they did not fight back hard enough on the email issues, and yes, there was a better defense that could have been argued. Why didn’t President Trump let “we the People” know about how intrusive the Russians were in meddling with our election systems?

      And yes, HRC messed up. She should not have gotten away with not going to the rural voters in MI, PA. OH, WI, to ask for their votes.

      Of the two parties, the Dems have the better policies/ products. But they also have to get in the habit of delivering the goods.

      Hugs, Gronda

      • Agreed. The dems have the policies, but they seem to be sorely lacking in marketing skills. I sometimes wonder if they even believe in their own message! You are on the front lines now … please let the rest of us know how we can help get the message, the platform out to the public. Letters to our newspapapers, OpEds, letters to Congress … just let us know. We must gain at least one chamber in 2018!
        Hugs!!!

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