UP: The unemployment rate. (“This [May jobs] report should put to rest the ‘we are out of the woods’ story line – but probably won’t. The army of discouraged workers remains awaiting mobilization that will push unemployment higher. Nothing to date suggests a strong reversal in the declining median incomes during the recovery.”)
DOWN: Hopes the recovery was robust. (“Had this jobs recovery merely kept pace with the average of the previous 10, there would be 7.6 million more people working today, and the unemployment rate would be less than half its current level”).
UP: Number of Americans who think the administration officials knew the Internal Revenue Service was targeting conservatives. (“Nearly six in 10 Americans believe that high-ranking IRS officials in Washington were aware the IRS had a practice of targeting conservative political groups for greater scrutiny in recent years.”)
DOWN: Number of people who approve of President Obama’s handling of the IRS scandal (58 percent disapprove, 32 percent approve).
UP: Prominent New Hampshire Republicans in favor of immigration reform.
DOWN: GOP’s prospects of winning over young voters if it doesn’t accept gay marriage. (“Taking the sample as a whole, about a quarter (26%) of young people say they’d probably or definitely not vote for a candidate who opposes gay marriage even if they were in agreement on many other issues.”)
UP: European countries surpassing the United States in job growth. (“While several European countries have fared worse, Canada, Sweden and even Britain, which is trapped in yet another recession, have enjoyed healthier job gains than the United States. In fact, of the nine countries surveyed by the Bureau of Labor Statistics, only perennially-troubled Italy and Japan performed worse.”)
DOWN: China’s trend on human rights (“The president needs to put America’s democratic principles front and center in discussions with China”).
UP: New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie’s favorable to unfavorable ratio (50 percent to 16 percent).
DOWN: Hillary Clinton. (“The former U.S. secretary of state’s favorability rating of 58 percent dropped 12 percentage points since December, when she recorded her top score in the survey at 70 percent. The proportion of Americans who say they view her very unfavorably has also doubled during that period, to 22 percent from 11 percent. . . plurality of those in the poll — 47 percent — said they disapprove of how Clinton handled the situation in Benghazi, while roughly a third — 34 percent — said they approve.”)
DOWN: Faith in liberal, activist government. (“The best outcome for Obama and his Internal Revenue Service is a full and credible investigation by Congress that determines the targeting of conservatives was not orchestrated by the White House but was rather rooted in bureaucratic incompetence. That would be good news. . . . Privately, top advisers admit that they don’t know if the denials are true, because a thorough investigation has yet to be conducted. No emails have been subpoenaed. No Obama aides put under oath. A quick and absolute denial might be smart short-term politics. But doesn’t anybody in Washington think long term?”)