“Are you better off than you were four years ago? The country was headed towards financial meltdown, and today we’re not even close to the cliff so I’d have to say as a whole, Americans are better off today than they were four years ago. Now, a new survey from Bloomberg reports that a plurality of Americans say “Yes, we are better off today than we were four years ago.”
From the story:
Forty-five percent of those surveyed in a Bloomberg National Poll say they are better off than at the beginning of 2009 compared with 36 percent who say they are worse off. In March, poll respondents split almost evenly on that question after having been decidedly negative since the aftermath of the worst recession in seven decades.
“I’m just tired of the doom and gloom,” says Jim Seeley, 52, a mortgage banker in Traverse City, Michigan, and a poll respondent, in a follow-up interview. “I think it’s looking better. People just need to stay positive.”
The poll, conducted June 15-18, contains more unlikely cheer for the president, with larger numbers of respondents saying their household income is higher than a year ago. While 44 percent say they are treading water, the better off outnumbered the worse off by 28 percent to 22 percent.
The share saying they are making substantial purchases they had been delaying, dining out more often, or taking deferred vacations all rose compared with March 2011. Seeley and his wife are among them. Earlier this year, the couple went on a seven-day cruise in the Gulf of Mexico, joining 27 percent of respondents who say they are taking postponed trips compared with 20 percent in March 2011
The survey has a margin of error of 3.1 percent.
Also from the story, Obama’s policies score higher points than Romney’s:
Even with the run of bad reports, Americans say they prefer Obama’s economic vision to that of his presumptive Republican rival, former Massachusetts Governor Mitt Romney, by a margin of 49 percent to 33 percent. That finding reflects a 7-percentage-point gain for Obama since March and an equal loss for his opponent, identified then as “Republicans” and in this survey as Romney.
“You don’t just trust the private sector to do the right thing,” says Chris Howell, 23, who works at a nonprofit organization in West Chester, Pennsylvania. Obama’s policies are better suited to providing “long-term solutions” for the economy’s problems, he added.