Goodbye Tampa, Hello Charlotte

Beyond speeches and platform votes, last week’s Republican Convention had an important purpose: to redirect the national conversation to problems voters face every day:  fewer jobs, lower wages, rising energy costs, and the prospect that our children’s future is being sold away to pay for the present.

The US National Debt clock was on prominent display, which has now approached a staggering $16 Trillion.

According to a Gallup Poll conducted in August, 65% of respondents agree economic concerns are far and away the most important problem facing the nation.

According to a recent Sentier Research study, median household incomes have suffered more in Obama’s economic “recovery” than they did during the actual recession he inherited.

To illustrate:

  • Median household income is down 4.8% since June 2009 (to $50,964)
  • Self-Employed median incomes fell 9.4%
  • African-American median incomes fell 11%
  • Hispanic median incomes fell 4.1%
  • Americans Ages 55-64 median incomes fell 9.7%

Despite all of these sad statistics regarding state of the Obama’s term in office, the rhetoric emanating from Chicago and this week’s Democratic convention continues to focus on class warfare.

Obama’s campaign team knows the American people do not trust the President on economic matters, and thus this week’s speeches will avoid discussing them as long as possible. Gallup’s most recent Obama approval data, as well as a recent CBS News Poll confirm this:

  • Only 45% Approve President Obama’s Job as President
  • 60% of Americans disapprove of Obama’s handling of the economy
  • Only 37% of Americans approve of Obama’s ability to create jobs

Most importantly:

  • 39% of Americans feel as though they are worse off today than four years ago, (40% feel they are the same and only 20% feel they are better off).

Much like in 1980, this election will be decided by Americans asking themselves if they are better off now than they were four years ago.  The data above illustrates how difficult it will be for Obama to convince them the answer is yes.