In his FiveThirtyEight blog, New York Times electoral math guru Nate Silver predicts that President Obama has a 74.4 percent chance of being re-elected. Seems curious, right? I mean, if this race is so close, why does Nate Silver give the president such a high chance of winning?
It could be the president's strong on-the-ground machine. It could be the Obama momentum we are starting to see in the polls. Or it just could be what's happening in the economy.
Now, Mitt Romney said in his economic speech today he's about "real change/big change" and the president, he says, is about "the status quo."
The dictionary definition of "status quo" means "the existing state of affairs." Here's what the economic state of affairs looks like under President Obama. In this case, status quo means progress. You want evidence? Watch the video below.
It was announced today that the economy grew 2 percent in the third quarter, after having grown 1.3 percent in the second quarter. Progress -- not fantastic, but steady progress nonetheless.
More evidence: The labor department said Thursday that unemployment benefit applications last week dropped by a surprising 23,000, which suggests hiring is strong enough to lower the unemployment rate.
And more, the actual unemployment rate, at 7.8 percent, is the lowest it's been since President Obama took office. There have been 5.2 million private sector jobs created in the past 31 months.
Why did the GDP grow more than last quarter? Consumer spending is one reason. Consumer confidence is at a five-year high. The stock market is also near a five-year high. Corporate profits are at a five-year high. New housing starts are at a five-year high. Foreclosures are at a four-year low.
The growth of government spending is the lowest it's been in 60 years, since President Eisenhower.
That's the so-called status quo: progress.
So if Mitt Romney's big change means that he's going to skew the tax code in favor of the folks at the top, you can have that kind of change.
If Mitt Romney's big change is to change back to George Bush policies -- deregulation, trickle down, deficits -- that's the kind of change I can't believe in. That's the kind of change we don't need.
No, we're not at the Promised Land yet -- but we're on the right track, and you'll decide whether we're going to turn back.
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