Let’s see if I understood correctly: 5.8 million jobs were added to the economy this year, including 531,000 last month. Unemployment fell to 4.6%.
COVID-19 vaccinations for American children are underway; around 28 million children aged 5 to 11 can be protected. Meanwhile, the 90-day average of cases and deaths in the general U.S. population tends to drop steadily, as vaccinations increase.
A $ 1.2 trillion infrastructure bill has been approved by Congress. Money, roughly speaking, will soon start flowing to all 50 states for badly needed road and bridge repairs. Rural communities with poor internet service will soon have broadband broadband. Lead pipes, which provide contaminated water to countless communities, will be replaced. The country’s shaky electricity grid will benefit from an upgrade. And more.
What else? Wages have risen 4.2% over the past year, slightly above the rate of “core inflation” that the Federal Reserve is watching like a hawk. Speaking of the Fed, she says household wealth in the United States is at an all time high, thanks to the strength of the real estate market and a stock market that continues to defy gravity.
Abroad, we have emerged from a money-hungry war in Afghanistan, and most of the world has a markedly improved opinion of America and a confidence in the president to do “the right thing in business.” global ”.
Unfortunate? Remind them well
To recap: Jobs, jabs, prosperity and peace. And yet, most Americans are unhappy. Only 28.6% say the country is heading in the right direction, according to the Real Clear Politics average of all recent polls.
And the aggregate RCP and FiveThirtyEight polls show President Joe Biden’s approval is hitting new lows: less than 43%.
If nearly 6 million jobs had been created in less than a year under the supervision of Donald Trump (verification of the facts: this is more than what was created during his four years in office), it is would launch a parade down Pennsylvania Avenue for himself.
If he could have pushed through a giant infrastructure bill – and in four years it failed, even though Republicans had both House and Senate majority in its first two years – the first thing that would have been built would not have been a bridge. but a monument to itself.
Biden does these things and his approval slips. Which give?
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I have the impression that the administration – from the president to the bottom – is not doing enough to “own the story”. When nearly 60% of the country – a vast majority that extends well beyond the 50-50 split between Republicans and Democrats – says things aren’t going well, well, something is happening.
Perhaps the something is that the Democrats have let the impressive economic gains that are occurring under their watch be overshadowed by their “awakening.” Don’t disparage words like “fairness” and “fairness,” but maybe Mr. Biden and Co. should spend more time reminding Americans of the basics: Jobs are plentiful. Salaries are on the rise. The country is opening up. Things are getting better. As Bill Clinton’s adviser James Carville said three decades ago: It’s the economy, stupid.
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Biden is a nice guy, a good guy. A practicing family man. A beloved grandfather. But he’s also an aw-shucks kind of president. Here’s the deal: What we need to see is for the president to talk more about his accomplishments. Certainly not in the “look like I am” Trump way, but certainly not in his low-key, long-winded way that doesn’t work now.
I still remember a phrase he used as vice president: “Osama bin Laden is dead and General Motors is alive!” Why hasn’t the White House communications office – or the president himself – come up with something concise that reflects jobs, salaries, vaccinations, and peace? Americans with a short attention span love lapidary.
Take credit in the states that matter
The president will travel to Baltimore on Wednesday to discuss the new infrastructure bill and what it will do for Charm City. God knows Baltimore needs fixing. But why waste time in a blue city in a blue state?
Why not step up his game and go to Ohio, where he was shut out by eight points a year ago, to remind the Trumpsters who fixes their bridges?
Why not hit all the swings while he’s at it? And unless I was looking in the wrong places on Facebook, or whatever it’s called these days, I haven’t found a lot of posts around these themes.
Transportation Secretary Pete Buttigieg is a smart and savvy guy. Do you know what else he is? A verbal sparrer par excellence. Remember how he got into the lion’s den – Fox News – last year and destroyed their anchors by turning the tide? I’d love to see him do that now to Tucker Carlson or Sean Hannity wearing tinfoil hats and ask them what’s so bad about 6 million jobs, protect kids and save wealth for the American people .
There is no doubt that Biden, like any president, is in trouble. It is a tragic fact that the evacuation in Afghanistan claimed the lives of 13 American servicemen. But it is also true that more than 120,000 men, women and children were safely evacuated and transported to freedom. We haven’t talked enough about the latter.
Inflation is on the rise, dampening the 4.9% increase in wages that Americans have experienced in the past year. Blame it on the global pandemic, which has erased the supply chain. These are global issues. But the way Republicans like parliamentary minority leader Kevin McCarthy speak, you’d think it was all because of Biden. McCarthy hopes to bring his misinformation to the speaker’s chair in a year. Unless the administration and its allies can blunt the Californian con artist’s account, he very well can.
Jobs, jabs, prosperity and peace. This is a good starting point for this president to better take ownership of the story he is writing.
Paul Brandus is the Founder and White House Bureau Chief of West Wing Reports and a member of the USA TODAY Contributors Council. Her latest book is “Jackie: Her Transformation from First Lady to Jackie O.” Follow him on Twitter: @WingWingReport