I fail to see how big business getting wealthier (that's what a positive GDP means) hurts the GOP when all the growth in employment consists of primarily low paying jobs. The deep recession wiped out primarily high-wage and middle-wage jobs. Yet the strongest employment growth during the sluggish recovery has been in low-wage work, at places like strip malls and fast-food restaurants.
In essence, the poor economy has replaced good jobs with bad ones. That is the conclusion of a new report from the National Employment Law Project, a research and advocacy group, analyzing employment trends four years into the recovery.
Having said that, the GOP is facing 5 big challenges in the mid term, in spite of their propaganda to the contrary.
1. Seniors: Although other voters have pulled back from the GOP, among no group has this shift been as sharp as it is among senior citizens. The reasons behind this range from the obvious — Republicans have widely embraced plans for dismantling Medicare, Social Security and Medicaid, all of which provide crucial support to older Americans — to the slightly less obvious — the economy and being frustrated with the GOP’s extremism.
2. Immigration: The GOP’s two-decade-old strategy of alienating Latinos and failure of the GOP house to pass immigration reform in combination with the fact that more Latinos will be voting in 2014 then did in 2010 spell bad news for Republicans.
3. The backfire of voter suppression: Somewhat related to above. The only way to defeat the GOP states that have put in place voting registration suppression measures is to focus on registration and getting voters whatever identification they need to cast their votes. This effort has already begun in California and as Texas and other states engage in the kind of discriminatory voting restrictions the Voting Rights Act used to block, the backlash could spread.The minority vote will already be 2 percent larger in 2014 than 2010 because of population growth, according to Ruy Teixeira, a Senior Fellow at both The Century Foundation and American Progress. If minorities support Democrats at levels close to how they backed President Obama, that helps erase the advantage Republicans have going into the election.
4. Complete Incompetence: The number of people who identify with the Republican Party has been shrinking since the 2012 election. This could be just a hangover of a big election loss, or the sign of actual dissatisfaction with the party. The GOP’s aversion to compromise makes the likelihood of some sort of government shutdown or debt default a possibility.
Republicans have never really won back the mantle of fiscal responsibility after blowing the surplus and George W. Bush leaving office with a $1.4 trillion deficit, but their intractability threatens to remind voters of the real reason they rejected Republicans so completely in 2008: incompetence.
5. Obamacare: Obamacare is working. We now have more Americans with health insurance, and three-quarters of enrollees say they’re happy with their health plans. Meanwhile, budget studies suggest that we’re reducing the long term deficits by reducing waste in the health care system. According to surveys, 78 percent of individuals with health plans are happy with them, including 74 percent of Republicans. In the past, many of us have been frustrated with insurance companies that canceled coverage when enrollees got sick or that denied essential care. It is very positive to see that more people are enrolled and that people like the care they’re getting.
These are the reasons the GOP should be worried. These are the bad news items that can hurt them in 2014.
Not the growth in GDP. That's just a reminder to lower economic voters that the rich get richer and they are getting poorer. The median wage is substantially less than the average wage. The reason for the difference is that the distribution of workers by wage level is highly skewed.
Posted on July 30, 2014 - 01:17 PM