Such are the findings of Gallup’s latest Economic Confidence Index survey, spanning the first half of 2011. D.C. was the only jurisdiction to score a positive rating — +11, up 12 points from its previous rating — on an index that measures the differential between poll respondents who feel positively about the economy and those who don’t. The nationwide index stands at -28.
Needless to say this is not going to improve the rest of the country’s view of Washington. From the Gallup report:
Many may argue that the relative economic optimism of those in the nation’s capital and the states around it — and its relative increase this year in Washington — reflects their insulation from what is happening in the rest of the economy. This is at least partly true because those living in and around D.C. benefit from having the federal government as their major industry. And, unlike state and local governments, the federal government has continued to grow even as many other industries have not during the recession and its aftermath.
Major caveat here: “The margins of sampling error range from ±1 percentage point for large states such as California to ±8 percentage points for the District of Columbia.”
Still, is this “good evidence for those arguing that Washington exists in its own disconnected bubble,” as the New York Times writes? Or are folks in Ward 8 just not picking up their phones for Gallup?
(h/t Chuck Thies)