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WPA's Weekly Political Brief 120504
 

WPA's Weekly Political Brief 120504

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    WPA's Weekly Political Brief 120504 WPA's Weekly Political Brief 120504 Presentation Transcript

    • WPA‟s Weekly Political Brief May 4, 2012 Page 1
    • WPA‟s Weekly Political BriefAs part of our continuing effort to keep our clients and friends up-to-date on the politicalenvironment as we head toward Election Day, 2012, we‟ll be distributing these weekly data updatesevery Friday.In each update you can expect to find the following key indicators tracked: • Direction of the Country • Obama Job Approval • National Unemployment • Obama Approval on the Economy • Generic Congressional Ballot • National & per capita debtIn addition, each week we‟ll feature a few charts showing what we think is the most interesting andtimely new data from that week. This week we have: • A look at the very tight Wisconsin gubernatorial race. With Scott Walker‟s image both well defined and polarized, the real battle will be fought over Independents and defining Tom Barrett. • Elizabeth Warren‟s inability to put a small controversy to bed quickly will have an impact in one of the most competitive races of the cycle. • Republicans are more likely to vote, and conservative Republicans are the most likely, showing that any divisions during the primary have been put soundly to bed. Page 2
    • Weekly SummaryPresident Obama‟s approval has remained relatively constant for months. Look for this to change as the generalelection continues to pick up momentum, one way or the other.Unemployment in April dropped to 8.1%, which would be good news for the president if it weren‟t another dropbased on workers leaving the workforce.• Only 115,000 new jobs were added, while 342,000 workers left the workforce.• Roughly 12.5 million Americans remain unemployed. • 41% of these have been unemployed for more than 6 months. With a majority of Americans disapproving of Obama‟s handling of the economy, Obama will need to address thisissue at some point during the campaign, or Romney will be able to simply do what he‟s best at: avoid mistakes.Two of the most competitive races of the election cycle made headlines this week. In Wisconsin, Scott Walker andTom Barrett are tied. Walker has a very polarized image, but nearly one in four voters have not made up theirminds about Barrett. The battleground looks to be shaping up over a few points of Independent swing anddefining Barrett‟s image to voters who are not yet familiar with him.In Massachusetts, Elizabeth Warren stumbled into trouble with a minor scandal over an ethnicity listing that hasgrown in the telling. In politics if you‟re explaining, you‟re losing, and Warren, down by only two points just a fewweeks ago, was still explaining at the end of the week.Republicans are consistently showing that they are more likely to definitely vote in the general election. Obama‟spresence on the ticket may be working against the down-ballot races for the Democrats this time, and the selfinflicted wounds of the primary appear to be healed. Page 3
    • Two out of three Americans are unhappy with the direction of the country. Direction of the County100%90%80% 75%70% 63% 64% 63% 57% 60% 61%60%50%40% 36% 34% 32% 29% 29% 30%30% 20% 18%20%10% 0% Jan-10 Apr-10 Jul-10 Oct-10 Jan-11 Apr-11 Jul-11 Oct-11 Jan-12 Apr-12 Approve Disapprove Source: Real Clear Politics Page 4
    • Obama‟s approval has been relatively steady since December. Obama Job Approval100%90%80%70%60% 52% 49% 52% 51% 51% 50% 48% 48% 49% 48% 48% 48%50%40% 46% 46% 46% 47% 47% 47% 47% 42% 44% 43% 44% 44%30%20%10% 0% Apr-11 May-11 Jun-11 Jul-11 Aug-11 Sep-11 Oct-11 Nov-11 Dec-11 Jan-12 Feb-12 Mar-12 Apr-12 May-12 Approve Disapprove One Week Ago One Month Ago Approve 48% 48% Disapprove 47% 47% Source: Real Clear Politics Page 5
    • Unemployment dropped to 8.1% in April, but hiring slowed as well, with only 115,000 new jobs added, roughly 45,000 new jobs were expected. The drop in unemployment was largely due to the 342,000 workers who dropped out of the workforce. 12% Official vs. Discouraged 9.60% 9.10% 8.90% 8.90% 10% 8.70% 8.70% 8% 9% 8.50% 8.30% 8.30% 6% 8.20% 8.10% 4% 2% 0% Apr-11 Dec-11 Jan-12 Feb-12 Mar-12 Apr-12 Official (U3) Total Unemployed plus discouraged workers (U4) National Unemployment Rate12.0%10.0% 8.0% 6.0% April, 2012 8.1% 4.0% 2.0% 0.0% Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics & Gallup Page 6
    • Jobs added have yet to surpass growth in the labor force, while the improvement in unemployment has been largely due to labor force reductions as people grow discouraged. Thousands of Jobs Jobs Added vs. Change in the Labor Force600 508500 476400 316 330300 280 275 259 202 223200 157 154 96 112 115 84 85 71100 54 0-100 -51 -50-200 -138 -164-300 -291-400 -342 May 2011 June 2011 July 2011 August September October November December January February March April 2012 2011 2011 2011 2011 2011 2012 2012 2012 Jobs Added Change in Labor Force Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics & Gallup Page 7
    • The national debt per taxpayer is $88,282 more than the debt per citizen. $15,702,049,415,512 U.S. National Debt$138,321 Debt Per Taxpayer$50,089 Debt Per Citizen Source: USDebtclock.org Page 8
    • Most American‟s do not approve of Obama‟s handling of the economy. Obama Economic Approval100.0% 90.0% 80.0% 70.0% 53% 60.0% 50.0% 40.0% 40% 30.0% 20.0% 10.0% 0.0% Approve Disapprove Source: Pollster.com Page 9
    • The generic congressional ballot is dead even. Generic Congressional Ballot100% Previous Election Day Generic Ballots90% 100% R+7 seats D+37 seats D+29 seats R+69 seats 49% 47% 54% 53% 52% 45%80% 46% 43% 50%70% 0%60% 2004 2006 2008 201050% 46% 45% 43% 44% 42% 45% 44% 41%40% 43% 44% 42% 43% 42% 43% 41% 41%30%20%10% 0% Jan-11 Feb-11 Mar-11 Apr-11 May-11 Jun-11 Jul-11 Aug-11 Sep-11 Oct-11 Nov-11 Dec-11 Jan-12 Feb-12 Mar-12 Apr-12 Democrat Republican Source: Real Clear Politics Seat change includes Congressional and Senate gains Page 10
    • The Wisconsin gubernatorial race is shaping up to be one of the most competitive races this cycle. It is also intensely polarized, with Independents currently favoring Governor Walker slightly. Ballot100% 9%90% 4%80% 47% 43%70%60% 87%50% 10% Barrett 7% 87% Undecided/DK40% Walker30% 46% 47%20%10% 5% 8% 0% Total Republican Independent Democrat (30%) (34%) (33%) Source: Marquette Poll Page 11
    • Republicans and Democrats have made up their minds on Walker, and Independents have a slightly favorable image of him. Barrett has more room for growth either way, with one in four voters not knowing much about him. Walker Image100% 11% 3%80% 43% 48%60% 86% 4% 5% Unfavorable40% 86% Havent heard enough/DK20% 48% 52% 5% Favorable 0% 9% Total Republican Independent Democrat (30%) (34%) (33%) Barrett Image100% 11%80% 39% 42% 26% 66%60% 24% Unfavorable 23%40% 63% Havent heard enough/DK20% 37% 23% 35% Favorable 0% 11% Total Republican Independent Democrat (30%) (34%) (33%) Source: Marquette Poll Page 12
    • In Massachusetts this week Elizabeth Warren drew headlines that will almost certainly impact the ballot in a very tight race. “Elizabeth Warren struggles with response to Native American questions (again)” “Elizabeth Warren says she used Native American Heritage to Meet Friends” “Elizabeth Warren Explains Native “Warren explains minority listing, talks of American Heritage Listing in Law Ballot grandfather‟s „high cheekbones‟” School Directory”100%80%60% 45% 45% 45% 45% 45% 45% 44% 43% 44%44%40% 43% 40%40% 43% 44% 44% 44% 43% 43% 43%20% 0% 9/28/11 10/28/11 11/28/11 12/28/11 1/28/12 2/28/12 3/28/12 Brown Warren Source: Pollster.com Page 13
    • Not only are Republicans of all types more likely to vote, but Conservative Democrats are the least likely among partisans. Obama‟s job approval among the critical 51.9% of Pure Independents is only 34%. % Who Will Definitely Vote Party Ideology100.00% 90.00% 88.30% Obama Job 85.20% Approval: 34% 80.00% 75.60% 74.80% 70.30% 70.00% 60.00% 51.90% 50.00% 40.00% 30.00% 20.00% 10.00% 0.00% Conservative Republican Moderate/Liberal Republican Pure Independent Conservative Democrat Moderate Democrat Liberal Democrat Source: Gallup Page 14
    • For additional information about this or any other of our services, please feel free to contact: Bryon Allen Chris Wilson Chris Perkins Partner and COO Partner and CEO Partner 202.470.6300 405.286.6500 202.494.3084 E-mail: E-mail: E-mail:BAllen@WPAResearch.com CWilson@WPAResearch.com CPerkins@WPAResearch.com Ryan Steusloff Vice President 202.470.6300 rsteusloff@WPAResearch.com Page 15