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Americans very optimistic about economy, future

The economy has broken several records over the past months, like the most job openings in one month—6.55 million in March. That means there were almost as many job openings as people counted as unemployed.

The unemployment rate fell to 3.9 percent in April. Also, Black and Hispanic unemployment rates have fallen to the lowest levels in recorded history. Among women, the unemployment rate has decreased to the lowest since the 1950s.

With the nation’s economy roaring at near record levels, two-thirds of Americans now view it positively and more than two-thirds believe that President Donald Trump’s policies are at least partly responsible, according to a recent YouGov poll.

Trump’s policies are a “great deal” responsible for the current state of the economy, believed 35 percent, while 33 percent thought his agenda is “somewhat” responsible.

People seemed cautious, however, to describe the economy in too rosy terms, with 18 percent rating it “very good” and 46 percent “somewhat good.”

Only nine percent, on the other hand, rated the economy “very bad.”

People also tended to be optimistic about their economic future over the next year or two, with 42 percent expressing optimism and 33 percent pessimism.

But even when counting the jobless who’ve looked for a job over the past 12 months and also those who’d like a full-time job but have to settle for a part-time one, the numbers look the best since 2001, standing at 7.8 percent, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.

The economy has been beating expectations for over a year thanks to a boost to confidence in the economy linked to President Donald Trump’s cutting of regulations, taxes, and his planned investment in infrastructure.

Trump ran on a core promise of reviving the economy and the promising results boost his agenda in the upcoming midterm elections.

Including two special elections, there will be 35 Senate seats up for grabs come election day on Nov. 6. Of those, 23 are currently held by Democrats and two by independents—Bernie Sanders and Angus King, who are allied with Democrats. Republicans hold eight seats.

In addition, voters will decide on all 435 voting seats in the House of Representatives, where Republicans currently hold 235 seats versus the Democrats’ 193.

Trump has recently dedicated a significant portion of his speeches to the midterms. In polling released this week, Trump’s approval remains at or above 50 percent and, for the first time in this election cycle, Democrats have lost the 15-point advantage they previously held in a “generic” preference ballot and Republicans now lead by one point. This has erased the expected Democrat landslide talked about by media pundits.

“Get out and vote. Don’t be complacent,” Trump said during his May 4 speech at the National Rifle Association convention. “Like 90 percent of the time, you win the Presidency and, for whatever reason you lose the midterm. We can’t let that happen.”

The YouGov poll, conducted on May 16-18, showed 48 percent of adults are “very likely” to vote in the midterms.

Respondents largely believed Congressional candidates should focus on their agenda, whether left- or right-leaning, as a priority, rather than supporting or opposing Trump’s agenda. Especially among the mix of Democrats and independents, only 28 percent believed opposing Trump’s agenda should be the candidates’ first priority.

 

 

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