“THE ECONOMY, stupid,” was the slogan of a strategist in Bill Clinton’s campaign for the presidency in 1992. It was a pithy encapsulation of time-honoured spin-doctoring wisdom: that a strong economy helps the incumbent and a weak one helps the challenger. When Mr Clinton took on George H.W. Bush in 1992, real wages were stagnant. Unemployment peaked just months before the poll—and, sure enough, Mr Bush failed to win a second term. The 2,000-odd studies on the “economic vote” since then have turned the pollsters’ hunch into political gospel. A cross-country analysis by Larry Bartels of Vanderbilt University, looking at 2007-11, found that each extra percentage point of GDP growth in the four quarters before an election was associated with a rise of 1% in the incumbent party’s vote share. But politics has changed. Today’s most heated debates concern issues of identity and culture—openness to immigrants or free trade; attitudes … [Read more...] about Does the economy affect elections any more?
How does recession affect the economy
What now for Labour? In the short term, the party is prepared to continue talks with Theresa May to try to see whether a compromise can be found on the future relationship that both sides can support. Two key problems threaten the prospect of success: the prime minister’s almost non-existent authority, and whether it is ultimately ever going to be in Labour’s interests to do a deal with the Tories. Senior Labour figures simply do not trust that whatever is offered by May or her de facto deputy, David Lidington, will have the support of the cabinet – or that it will not simply be unpicked by a future leader. Internally, the six-month extension to article 50 complicates matters. There is no urgency to avoid no deal and come to a Brexit agreement. Labour MPs who had been thinking about finally voting for May’s deal are less likely to do so now. Supporters of a second referendum will feel emboldened to push the party towards backing legislation to allow a fresh poll … [Read more...] about What does a Brexit delay mean for politics, business, citizens and the EU?
There has been much debate about why the public has started to lose faith in mainstream political parties but the reason behind the rise of populism doesn’t take much working out. The past decade has seen the biggest financial crisis in a century, the biggest slump since the Great Depression and the slowest recovery since the second world war. Living standards have flatlined and public spending has been cut. People are anxious, frustrated and angry. The only real surprise is that they are not angrier. That, though, may only be a matter of time, because rapid technological change is happening at a time when the global economy seems fragile and many people feel they are getting a raw deal. These are perfect conditions for an age of insecurity. So far, the response from mainstream parties has been unimpressive. Those expressing concerns about the hollowing out of industrial communities by globalisation have been lectured about the benefits of free trade. Those who have voiced … [Read more...] about It’s easy to see why populists do well in an age of insecurity
“Are you better off today than you were four years ago?” That statement helped President Ronald Reagan to be elected in 1980.What may not be remembered so well is that in 1980, Louisiana was on the cusp of an epic collapse in the price of oil. It reduced the state budget to a shambles and among other misfortunes brought Edwin W. Edwards back to the Governor’s Mansion in 1984.Can John Bel Edwards, or his challengers, use the Reaganesque construction in 2019?There long has been a bit of a low-level political warfare over the economy and state budget policy, with Edwards critics like U.S. Sen. John N. Kennedy, R-Madisonville, among the most captious, comparing Louisiana’s economic progress with other states, which often rebounded better from the recession of 2008-09.“Private sector job growth is among the lowest in the country. Too many of our kids can’t read their diplomas,” Kennedy said in October.But the governor has responded frequently with a … [Read more...] about Lanny Keller: It’s going to be a year of dueling statistics