The Washington Times Weekly - - Politics -

Po­lit­i­cal at­tacks on Pres­i­dent Trump and his ad­min­is­tra­tion con­tinue, am­pli­fied by me­dia cov­er­age that is of­ten melo­dra­matic, neg­a­tive and ma­nip­u­la­tive — long on spec­u­la­tion and short on facts. Jit­tery vot­ers are con­tin­u­ally dis­tracted by con­flict­ing or shift­ing news ac­counts, along with anony­mously sourced re­port­ing and an em­pha­sis on a se­lect nar­ra­tives that in­cor­po­rate par­ti­san opin­ion.

But this is the land­scape Mr. Trump faces — along with ob­struc­tion by Se­nate Democrats. So far, only a quar­ter of the pres­i­dent’s nom­i­na­tions for ad­min­is­tra­tion posts have been con­firmed, ac­cord­ing to both the Repub­li­can Na­tional Com­mit­tee and the White House it­self. By this point in his pres­i­dency, 69 per­cent of for­mer Pres­i­dent Obama’s nom­i­na­tions had been con­firmed.

De­spite all of this, Mr. Trump has signed 37 bills into law six months into his pres­i­dency, more than all four of his pre­de­ces­sors — best­ing Mr. Obama, who had signed 24 bills by that time in of­fice. At this point in their terms, Ge­orge W. Bush had signed 15 bills, Bill Clin­ton 33 bills, and Ge­orge H.W. Bush 35, ac­cord­ing to a re­port from House Ma­jor­ity Leader Kevin McCarthy.

Mean­while, eco­nomic indicators re­leased in the last four weeks re­main pos­i­tive. The Dow Jones In­dus­trial Av­er­age recorded its 23rd all-time high of 2017 last week; since the Nov. 8 elec­tion, it has reached record highs 40 times, says a close anal­y­sis by Gateway Pun­dit. The mar­ket is up 9 per­cent since Mr. Trump’s in­au­gu­ra­tion, and 17 per­cent since the elec­tion.

There’s more. A Pew Re­search Cen­ter poll con­ducted in 38 na­tions found that the U.S. is still con­sid­ered the world’s lead­ing econ­omy, with China in sec­ond place. Mean­while, 60 per­cent of U.S. em­ploy­ers plan to hire per­ma­nent, full-time work­ers in the “sec­ond half of the year,” ac­cord­ing to a Har­ris Poll while a Har­vard Univer­sity sur­vey found that 55 per­cent of vot­ers ap­prove of the way Mr. Trump is han­dling both job cre­ation and the econ­omy.

On Fri­day, Ras­mussen Re­ports noted that “con­fi­dence in per­sonal fi­nances hits a four-year high,” cit­ing their own daily con­sumer con­fi­dence in­dex, up five per­cent­age points this month to 157.3.“Im­me­di­ately fol­low­ing the 2016 pres­i­den­tial elec­tion, en­thu­si­asm about the econ­omy started to grow and has been on the up­swing for six of the last eight months. In Pres­i­dent Obama’s fi­nal year in of­fice, eco­nomic rat­ings ranged from 112.7 to 122.9,” the poll­ster noted. takeover. Their prob­lem is they’re car­ry­ing far more vul­ner­a­ble in­cum­bents in the cy­cle than Repub­li­cans are, in­clud­ing 10 in states car­ried by Pres­i­dent Trump last year,” says Mr. Catanese, who adds that the GOP can­di­dates ap­pear to be keep­ing their pow­der dry as Mr. Trump dukes it out with a hos­tile news me­dia and par­ti­san crit­ics.

“Democrats mean­while, are try­ing to seize the mo­ment early in or­der to defy the dif­fi­cult odds later,” the an­a­lyst rea­sons.

Here are the four im­por­tant Se­nate races crank­ing up: In Ne­vada, it’s Sen. Dean Heller, Repub­li­can, vs. Rep. Jacky Rosen, Demo­crat. In Texas, Sen. Ted Cruz, Repub­li­can, is be­ing chal­lenged by Rep. Beto O’Rourke, Demo­crat. West Vir­ginia will pit Sen. Joe Manchin, Demo­crat, against one of two Repub­li­cans: Rep. Evan Jenk­ins or state At­tor­ney Gen­eral Pa­trick Mor­risey. Then there’s Ohio, which will fea­ture Sen. Sher­rod Brown, Demo­crat, against ei­ther state trea­surer John Man­del or prom­i­nent busi­ness­man Mike Gib­bons.


De­spite con­tin­ued tur­moil in politics, the econ­omy and the na­tion’s pro­duc­tiv­ity are thriv­ing. The mar­ket is up 9 per­cent since Jan. 20.

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