At the moment, there are lots of bad numbers kicking around the political world for President Joe Biden and his party in Congress, but none may be worse than this one: -45. This is the most recent Economic Confidence Index number by Gallup, which “summarizes Americans’ ratings of current economic conditions and whether the economy is getting better or worse.” +100 means “very good” and -100 means “very bad.”
WATCH the report on it:
The -45 rating from May is the public’s most negative view of the economy Gallup has measured since the end of the Great Recession in early 2009.
So even more daunting news is what the numbers inside Gallup’s index provide for Democrats. Just 14% of Americans said that economic conditions in the US are “excellent” or “good,” while 46%, which is more than three times that number, said economic conditions were “poor” and 39% rated them as “only fair.”
That’s even worse than April when Gallup found that 1 in 5 Americans said that the state of the economy was either “excellent” or “good,” while 42% said they were “poor.”
Gallup’s survey is far from a one-off. Last month, in the latest released polling from CNN, just 23% of Americans rated economic conditions as even somewhat good. That is a drastic fall from the 37% who said the same in December 2021 and precipitously from the 54% who said the same in April 2021, per report.
Americans’ views of the economy are the worst they have been in a decade, as overall was found by the CNN poll.
On the same day, when Gallup’s numbers came out, Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen acknowledged to CNN’s Wolf Blitzer that she had made a mistake when she said in 2021 that inflation only posed a “small risk.”
“I think I was wrong then about the path that inflation would take. There have been unanticipated and large shocks to the economy that have boosted energy and food prices and supply bottlenecks that have affected our economy badly that I didn’t, at the time, didn’t fully understand, but we recognize that now,” Yellen said.
This might be right and true, as she is speaking as an economist, but in the current political moment for the Treasury secretary to admit this publicly is a big problem.
Just as the Biden White House, and the President himself, seems to have finally grasped just how dire their political situation is on the economy, all of this negative news is coming, on how people perceive the economy.
“I’m meeting with the chairman today and Secretary Yellen to discuss my top priority, that is addressing inflation in order to transition from historic recovery to a steady growth for American families. And my plan is to address inflation, starts with a simple proposition: respect the Fed, respect the Fed’s independence, which I have done and will continue to do,” said Biden.
That meeting came a day after Biden published an op-ed in the Wall Street Journal where he laid out his plan for lowering inflation.
“Americans are anxious. I know that feeling. I grew up in a family where it mattered when the price of gas or groceries rose. We felt it around the kitchen table. But the American people should have confidence that our economy face,” wrote Biden.