America’s economic unhappiness

Two thirds of Americans feel suspicious or skeptical about their country’s economic situation. According to a Gallup poll, only 23 percent said they were satisfied with the way things are going in the United States, down from a 28 percent satisfaction rate last month.

dollarThree months before the presidential elections, figures and sondages are multiplying. We’ll certainly see numbers shift, popularity indexes soar and fall before the D-day, and both parties squeeze their arguments and communication tools to get as much votes and donations as they can.

Even if historically Democrats are more likely than Republicans to mention dissatisfaction with government, Obama’s team needs to work full-speed to seduce its potential voters. Low satisfaction levels are a big threat to the president’s reelection.

Satisfaction is now similar to what it was in early August 1992 (17%), prior to George H.W. Bush’s re-election defeat. It is significantly lower than what it was in mid-August 1996 (38%) and mid-August 2004 (44%), years in which incumbents Bill Clinton and George W. Bush, respectively, were re-elected,” Gallup’s poll says.


The biggest problems: a weak economy and unemployment, which have ranked as the top problems each month since February 2008. The U.S is facing the feeblest economic recovery since the Great Depression. At 8.3 percent in July, jobless rate is the highest this long after a recession ended. People’s paychecks have fallen behind inflation.

Consumer and business confidence have been undermined because Europe’s troubles. And the deeply divided U.S. political system doesn’t really help either.

About the Author

Ana Fuentes
Columnist for El País and a contributor to SER (Sociedad Española de Radiodifusión), was the first editor-in-chief of The Corner. Currently based in Madrid, she has been a correspondent in New York, Beijing and Paris for several international media outlets such as Prisa Radio, Radio Netherlands or CNN en español. Ana holds a degree in Journalism from the Complutense University in Madrid and the Sorbonne University in Paris, and a Master's in Journalism from Spanish newspaper El País.

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