Tuesday, April 21, 2020

Who’s Best Reviving the Economy?

President Trump has mostly lost control of the narrative over competence on managing the response to the COVID-19 crisis. He’s now fighting to control what he considers an even bigger issue – any and all good news that can be produced concerning the economy. Some elements of his strategy:
  • Bad news, like shutdowns, belongs to governors. Good news, like start-up, is his.
  • He and his entourage argue scientists and some governors and mayors have overreacted in shutdown. He’s been a consistent advocate for opening it up.
  • He will be best qualified to super charge a recovery. He got the U.S. to 3.5 percent unemployment. He can do it again.
Although he may be on the defense for his early response, he feels he can reset with the economy to save himself on November 3. It will be a challenge, but Trump is a relentless marketer.

Some findings from a new national survey from Pew Research show Trump has lost the narrative of competence by being seen as slow to respond and they express concern about his advocacy of a quick opening. He has much lower credibility than medical authorities and state governors. But, he still is seen as credible on the economy (a 52% economic performance approval in RealClearPolitics.com) if primarily for business, not the general public, and his overall approval remains about the same at 44 percent positive and 53 percent negative.
  • Most Americans say Trump was too slow in initial response to coronavirus threat – 65% too slow, 34% too quick (Pew Research reported 4/18, conducted 4/8-12)
  • The greater concern is state governments opening too quickly – 66% too quickly, 32% not quickly enough (Pew, 478)
  • Less than two-fifths say Trump’s public comments on outbreak are accurate – 39% accurate, 52% better than really is
  • Over half say he does a good job addressing business needs, but less say he’s done well on financial needs of ordinary people – 51% needs of businesses, 46% needs of ordinary people
  • Approval of job performance – 44% positive, 53% negative

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