Friday, October 24, 2014
FAIRFIELD-SUISUN, CALIFORNIA
99 CENTS

Obama’s economic focus seeks to unify Democrats

By
June 18, 2014 |

WASHINGTON — This was the year President Obama would go all in on the economy, elevating the struggles of the poor and the middle class to the top of his agenda. But that focus has been sporadic, overshadowed by foreign policy hot spots in Ukraine and Iraq and controversies like the swap for a U.S. prisoner in Afghanistan.

As Democrats demand that the White House lead with a unified economic message, Obama during the next several weeks is looking to cut through with an emphasis on working families, manufacturing, wages and the need for greater spending on infrastructure projects. The attention could be crucial in an election year when some Democrats in vulnerable races are not embracing other top Obama issues like climate change and health care.

The summer economic focus comes amid signs that the economy is steadily recovering from the recession. U.S. manufacturing output, for instance, rose at a solid pace in May, the latest indicator that the economy is rebounding from a weak first quarter. The unemployment rate is down to 6.3 percent, the stock market is humming, auto sales were up last month.

For all that, White House officials concede the American public is still anxious about the economy. Wages remain stagnant, workers have dropped out of the labor force, and 3.4 million Americans have been without work for 27 weeks or more, thus classifying them as long-term unemployed.

It is in that environment that the White House over the next four weeks is planning to focus on several economic fronts, from manufacturing and innovation this week to working families next week to insourcing and infrastructure. Obama themes will range from education and good wages, to job training and tax fairness – all the while stressing their direct benefit to individual Americans.

“The next five months will be a referendum on the fundamental questions – who’s got your back – and that’s what this election is going to be about,” said Rep. Steve Israel of New York, chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee.

A top Obama priority such as raising the minimum wage, which enjoys broad public support, is much more likely to find nearly unanimous Democratic backing in Congress than Obama’s health care law or his recent push to slow carbon emissions in coal-powered electrical plants.

“Democrats need to have a program that they are broadly for and that is popular with the base and swing voters,” said Brad Woodhouse, president of the liberal Americans United for Change.

Obama on Tuesday will promote technological innovations during a trip to Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, and on Wednesday during a workshop at the White House that focuses on advancing entrepreneurship. Next week he will host a working families summit at the White House. Last week, he emphasized proposals to ease the burden of student loans on college graduates.

So far this year, Obama has also acted on his own where possible, requiring federal contractors to pay a higher minimum wage, ordering a review of overtime rules and expanding a student loan program.

In every instance, a key White House goal is to set up a contrast with the Republican Party and gain advantage on issues that are popular with the public but that have not been enough to give Obama an edge.

Obama’s approval rating for handling the economy remains significantly underwater according to a May Associated Press-GfK survey in which 59 percent disapproved of his handling of the nation’s economy and 39 percent approved. Those figures have been steady since last fall, with no improvement evident despite the overall improvement in the nation’s unemployment rate.

Asked which party they trust more to handle the economy, 27 percent say the Republicans, 25 percent the Democrats and 31 percent neither. About 1 in 7 says they trust both parties equally on the issue.

Some Republicans argue that the lingering worries about the economy are bound to ultimately harm Democrats.

GOP pollster Wes Anderson, who is consulting for several Republicans in Senate races, says that no matter what some larger economic indicators say, middle-class or lower middle-class Americans in suburban, exurban or rural areas aren’t convinced the economy is on the mend.

“The question is how important is that going into the fall,” Anderson said. “I think it is the under-addressed dark cloud for the Democrats lurking out there.”

“We’re advising our clients to draw a distinction between Washington’s economy and yours, Wall Street’s economy and yours,” he said, pointing to past bank bailouts and federal government deficits and debt. “Why let Democrats kick us in the head and make us the friends of big money all the time when we have the ability to make the case that the opposite is true.”

Republicans in turn have been calling for tax breaks to promote economic growth and job creation, proposals that Democrats have rejected and that White House political director David Simas, who has been studying the impact of economic proposals on public attitudes, says do not resonate with voters.

“When they hear folks in Washington talk in these abstractions about either growth or tax incentives for this or that,” Simas said, “it is so removed from what people care about that it turns them off and shuts them out.”

The Associated Press

The Associated Press

LEAVE A COMMENT

Discussion | 1 comment

The Daily Republic does not necessarily condone the comments here, nor does it review every post. Read our full policy

  • DanielJune 17, 2014 - 6:33 am

    Economic plan? What taxing carbon and putting compaines how of business sicking the EPA and all the others and raising taxes even more, how many jobs is that going to create in the private economy other than grants to campaign donors?

    Reply | Report abusive comment
.

Solano News

 
‘The Rocky Horror Show’ finds a home on stage

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
For sale: Solano home with Nike missile bunkers

By Ian Thompson | From Page: A1, 3 Comments | Gallery

 
Cassette tapes used for music and more

By Tony Wade | From Page: A2

 
Salvation Army debuts giant kettle for holidays campaign

By Robinson Kuntz | From Page: A3 | Gallery

 
Fairfield police log: Oct. 22, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

 
Suisun City police log: Oct. 22, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A12

.

US / World

New survey details vast scope of teen dating abuse

By The Associated Press | From Page: A1, 1 Comment

 
Boosters seek to keep Bay Bridge light display

By The Associated Press | From Page: A3 | Gallery

Driver attacked after ice cream truck kills boy

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 4 Comments | Gallery

 
$50,000 reward to find killer of Anaheim girl, 9

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

Video shows bikers taunting California officer

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4, 1 Comment

 
California man guilty in wife’s stabbing death

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

Brown opens up spending in campaign’s final month

By The Associated Press | From Page: A4

 
Suspect in girl’s 1984 killing was police employee

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

PTSD argued in case of Marine jailed in Mexico

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5, 1 Comment | Gallery

 
US tech firm fined for underpaying Indian workers

By The Associated Press | From Page: A5

Paintings in national parks spark probe, furor

By The Associated Press | From Page: A6

 
Prisoner in Afghanistan to be tried in US

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

US, SKorea agree to delay wartime control transfer

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
US officials: Iraqi army regrouping slowly

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Gary killings put spotlight on abandoned buildings

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Lawmakers seek to end benefits to former Nazis

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7, 1 Comment

For teen with passport, Syria trip can be seamless

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

 
Border deaths drop to 15-year low

By The Associated Press | From Page: A7

Cremation fears leave empty Ebola beds in Liberia

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10 | Gallery

 
Ex-Mountie hero of shooting at Canada’s Parliament

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

Canada gunman wanted a passport to go to Mideast

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
NYC mayor: Don’t be alarmed by doctor’s Ebola

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

NK experts: US must apologize to free detainees

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10

 
Ebola: A crash course in fear and how it hurts us

By The Associated Press | From Page: A10, 1 Comment

NY doctor back from Guinea has Ebola, 1st in city

By The Associated Press | From Page: A12

 
.

Opinion

 
Planning Commission not listening to the people

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11

Not sure I trust government on Ebola

By Letter to the Editor | From Page: A11, 3 Comments

 
Is America prepared for Ebola or is threat overhyped?

By Ben Boychuk and Joel Mathis | From Page: A11

.

Living

Community Calendar: Oct. 24, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: A2

 
Today in History: Oct. 24, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: A2

My husband and I don’t share anything anymore, including a bedroom

By Kathy Mitchell and Marcy Sugar | From Page: A9

 
Horoscopes: Oct. 24, 2014

By Holiday Mathis | From Page: A9

.

Entertainment

Week in preview Oct. 24-30, 2014

By Amy Maginnis-Honey | From Page: B1

 
Review: ‘John Wick’ delivers non-stop action

By The Associated Press | From Page: B2

 
‘Rocky Horror’ a participatory treat

By Tony Wade | From Page: B3

Entertainment calendar Oct. 24, 2014

By Susan Hiland | From Page: B4

 
Burns’ series gives PBS a ratings milestone

By The Associated Press | From Page: B5

TVGrid

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: B6

 
Q&A: Mick Jagger, the film producer, heads to work

By The Associated Press | From Page: B6

.

Sports

 
At 1-all, World Series moves to quirky Giants park

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7

Giants’ Hudson to face Royals’ Guthrie in Game 3

By The Associated Press | From Page: B7 | Gallery

 
College notebook: Cordes chosen to try out for USA national team

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B7 | Gallery

Homecoming still on but no game for VCS

By Daily Republic staff | From Page: B8

 
Compton among PGA leaders at Sea Island

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Steve Nash ruled out for season with back injury

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Judge questions $75M NCAA concussion settlement

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

Arizona men near-unanimous pick by media to win Pac-12

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
Raiders may lose Woodley to biceps injury

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

No. 6 Oregon looks to extend streak against Cal

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8

 
The Write Way: KC coach’s lineup cards are artful

By The Associated Press | From Page: B8 | Gallery

Prep football capsules: Week 8

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B9

 
Manning, Sanders lead Broncos past Chargers, 35-21

By The Associated Press | From Page: B9 | Gallery

Sports on TV/Local sports for Friday, Oct. 24, 2014

By Paul Farmer | From Page: B10

 
This date in sports history for Friday, Oct. 24, 2014

By The Associated Press | From Page: B10

.

Business

Honda Fit becomes even more intriguing small car

By Ann M. Job | From Page: C1 | Gallery

 
Letting your car find a spot and park itself

By The Associated Press | From Page: C2 | Gallery

Cloud business lifts Microsoft’s quarterly results

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11

 
A blue Christmas for Amazon?

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11

Zuckerberg speaks Chinese, Beijing students cheer

By The Associated Press | From Page: B11 | Gallery

 
.

Obituaries

Mark Dean Lindsay

By Nancy Green | From Page: A4

 
.

Comics

Sally Forth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baby Blues

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Beetle Bailey

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Frank and Ernest

By Daily Republic | From Page: A8

For Better or Worse

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Garfield

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Pickles

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
B.C.

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Peanuts

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Baldo

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Blondie

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Get Fuzzy

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Rose is Rose

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Wizard of Id

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Dilbert

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

 
Zits

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A8

Crossword

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Cryptoquote

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Bridge

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

 
Sudoku

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9

Word Sleuth

By Daily Republic Syndicated Content | From Page: A9