As economy strengthens, Obama’s popularity is likely to rise

As economy strengthens, Obama’s popularity is likely to rise

When will the improving American economy translate into higher approval ratings for President Obama?

It will take time. But if recent trends continue, Mr. Obama’s political standing is likely to strengthen.

The economy is turning upward. Job growth is increasing, as The Upshot’s Neil Irwin has noted, and wage and income growth – which have been largely nonexistent for years – are likely to pick up. The latest estimate shows G.D.P. grew at a rate of 5 percent in the third quarter, the fastest rate since 2003.

The political currents are seemingly running in the opposite direction from the economy, however. Mr. Obama’s approval ratings are currently mired in the low 40s – mirroring the ratings for his handling of the economy – and his party was soundly defeated in November’s midterm elections.

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