The Good, The Bad And The Ugly Aspects Of Obama’s Latest Presidential Report Card

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With President Obama’s final State of the Union address is receding into history, has released its presidential report card for January, and the news is mostly positive for the administration.

–Homicides have dropped 13 percent, but gun sales have surged.
–The economy has added more than 9 million jobs, and the jobless rate has dropped to below the historical median.
–The number of long-term unemployed Americans has dropped by 614,000 under Obama, but it is still 761,000 higher than at the start of the Great Recession.
–Corporate profits are up 166 percent; real weekly wages are up 3.4 percent.
–There are 15 million fewer people who lack health insurance.
–Wind and solar power have nearly tripled, and now account for more than 5 percent of U.S. electricity.
–The federal debt has more than doubled — rising 116 percent — and big annual deficits have continued.

The chart below illustrates in more detail some of the positives and negatives, but at a glance, the president seems to been doing extraordinarily well on the economy, with the exception of income inequality and the comparatively flatlined weekly wages. An increased number of food stamp recipients since 2008 is never a good thing, but the good news is that the number has dropped since the previous FactCheck report.

Regarding jobs, the following analysis of the decline in the infamous “labor participation rate” jumped off the screen:

Contrary to many of Obama’s critics, however, that decline is due mostly to factors outside the control of any president — factors such as the post-World War II baby boomers reaching retirement age. Survey data published by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in December show that those outside the labor force in 2014 said their reasons for not working were retirement (44 percent), illness or disability (19 percent), school attendance (18 percent) or home responsibilities (15 percent). Only 3 percent said they couldn’t find a job, or gave some other reason.

In other words, the Republicans often cite the low labor participation rate as a consequence of Obama’s policies. Only, it’s not. It’s retiring baby boomers. Again, only three percent of the rate can be attributed to jobs. At most.

Here’s the entire FactCheck report card.

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Reprinted with permission from Addicting Info