Republican Voters Don't Agree With Fed on Economy
NEW YORK ( TheStreet) -- Republicans can't seem to agree with the Federal Reserve , even when the Fed states a fact.
Though central bank governors agree that, while mixed, the economy has been positive, exit polls show most Republicans think the national economy is getting worse.
Exit polls taken by The Washington Post showed 40% of Wisconsin voters felt the economy was "getting worse," while 50% of Maryland voters and 45% of Illinois voters responded the same. The percentage of primary voters who said they thought the economy was "starting to recover" lagged significantly in Wisconsin, Maryland and Illinois at 30%, 21% and 22%, respectively.
Granted, many voters could have been responding based on their perception of economic circumstances rather than what statistics have shown, but it's significant that the percentage gap is in the double digits between those who see a recovery and those who see more downturn.
"There's such a deep-seated personal opposition to this president and everything that he's done," said Gary Dorrien, a social ethicist at Columbia University. "This recovery is very slow, we're coming out of a very deep hole, but all of the macroeconomic indicators are pointing in the right direction."
Since 1948, only once has unemployment been above the 10% high of October 2009: From September 1982 through June 1983, the unemployment rate hung at 10.1% or higher before it fell off to 9.4% in July 1983, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
Through February 2012, though, unemployment has dropped off to a current 8.3% rate as other key indicators like gross domestic product, manufacturing and households' real disposable income have improved, albeit moderately.
"On balance, U.S. financial conditions became somewhat more supportive of growth over the intermeeting period," the Federal Open Market Committee notes released Tuesday said. "
Despite the Fed's cautious guidance, a large number of Republican voters do think the economy is getting worse.
Dorrien, whose recent book "The Obama Question: A Progressive Perspective" offers a critique of the successes and failures of Obama's term as president, said he can sympathize with the chunk of Americans who can't find work, and he even contended that Obama likely wasn't ready for the economic collapse that's unfolded since his 2008 victory.
"Frankly, he wasn't ready. I mean he needed, even now, he thinks he needs