American’s are feeling more positive about the country’s economic outlook, and with good cause. During the fourth quarter of 2014 GDP grew 5%, surpassing the Commerce Department’s initial estimate of 3.9%. The 5% growth rate is the best in eleven years.
November saw good job growth as well, with employers adding 321,000 during the month. That made 2014 the strongest year for job growth since 1999. These factors combined with falling gas prices, decreased health care costs, record corporate earnings, a decreasing deficit, rising wages, and records highs in the stock market are giving Americans an optimistic view of the economy.
In the most recent CNN/ORC poll released on Tuesday, fifty-one percent of Americans say economic conditions are “somewhat” or “very” good as compared to forty-nine percent who said conditions were “somewhat” or “very” poor. The increase in favorable ratings is a 13% gain over October’s numbers. Much to the chagrin of Republicans the positive view of the economy has resulted in a more favorable view of President Obama.
The President’s approval rating has reached a 20-month high of 48%. With Republicans taking control of the House and Senate in 2015 the gains made by the Obama administration may come to a crawl. The GOP is sure to push an agenda with an eye towards the 2016 election.
The economy under President Obama has emerged from a tough recovery and is strong. Republicans, who had almost complete control over the government from 2001-2007, saw increasing deficits, high unemployment, and a falling stock market. It is impossible to deny the success of President Obama’s economy when compared to his predecessor.