Obama Leaves US and SD Mostly Better Off

NBC offers an exit report on the performance of the Obama Administration over the last eight years. By their several statistics, NBC concludes President Obama made life better for pretty much everyone… except for hungry folks, debt hawks, and Democratic partisans:screen-shot-2016-12-06-at-8-32-32 screen-shot-2016-12-06-at-8-32-39

The numbers comparing early 2009 to the most recent available data:

  1. Unemployment: down from 7.8% to 4.6%.
  2. Dow Jones Industrial Average: up from 7,949.09 to 19,170.42.
  3. Gross domestic product growth: up from –5.4% to +3.2%.
  4. Consumer confidence index: up from 37.4 to 107.1.
  5. Median household income, adjusted for inflation: up from $54,988 to $56,516.
  6. Americans without health insurance: down from 49 million to 29.8 million.
  7. Americans receiving food stamps: up from 33 million to 46 million.
  8. Federal debt: up from $10.6 trillion to $19.9 trillion.
  9. Federal spending as percentage of GDP: down from 24.4% to 21.4%.
  10. Democrats in U.S. House: down from 256 to 188 (194 coming in January).
  11. Democrats in U.S. Senate: down from 58 to 46 (48 coming in January)
  12. Democratic governors: down from 28 to 18.
  13. U.S. troops in Iraq: down from 139,500 to 5,200.
  14. U.S. troops in Afghanistan: down from 34,400 to 9,800.

Hmmm… let’s check some of those metrics at the South Dakota level:

  1. Unemploymentdown from 5.0% to 2.4% (stronger than national change).
  2. SD Stock Tickerup from 17.01 to 46.77 (stronger than Dow improvement).
  3. Annual state GDP growth: up from 1.0% to to 1.8% (weaker the U.S. recovery)
  4. Gallup consumer confidence: up from –83 to –6 (different metrics; hard to compare).
  5. Median household incomeup from $49,768 to $53,017 (stronger dollar and percentage gains than national).
  6. South Dakotans without health insurancedown from 15.1% to 12.0% (less improvement than U.S.).
  7. South Dakotans receiving food stamps: up from 70,661 to 95,871 (bit less than U.s. increase).
  8. State budget gap—change from $71.4 million deficit to $14.1 million surplus.
  9. State general fund budget as percentage of GDP: little change from 3.16% to 3.18%.
  10. Democrats in SD Housedown from 24 to 12 (10 coming next month).
  11. Democrats in SD Senatedown from 14 to 8 (6 coming next month).

By seven out of nine economic metrics, the nation is better off after eight years of Barack Obama’s Presidency. Ditto for South Dakota.

27 Responses to Obama Leaves US and SD Mostly Better Off

  1. Many of the metrics are positive with a few obviously negatives indicators (food stamps, total government debt etc.). Hard to argue with the facts, but I cannot help but think things are about to get much, much worse.

    Will we as a nation be better off than we are today four years from now? I sincerely doubt it. Whoever runs against Trump in 2020 (if Trump even lasts that long or wishes to run again) will probably have a lot of performance measures to use to his or her benefit.

  2. bearcreekbat

    The increase in SNAP (food stamps) recipients is a positive result, not a negative. According to economics professor Casey B. Mulligan the increase was caused in large part by the Obama Administration’s efforts (through rule changes and outreach) to assure more people were covered and that SNAP benefits increased to help families obtain a decent and adequate diet. In addition, there is substantial evidence (although no statistical data yet) of increased outreach efforts to helps eligible families receive the benefits the law intended.


    The Obama Administration’s efforts to increase SNAP participation and benefits in an ongoing effort to make sure our population has adequate nutrition is a positive step forward. Tougher eligibility rules and lowered benefits would have reduced SNAP expenses, but would have resulted in more hunger and sickness for low income folks, which is not a positive result and would likely have cost more tax dollars in the long run than trying to keep America’s children and families healthy.

  3. No matter how good Obama has been, it just can’t compensate for the phony belief that he’s a secret Muslim born in Kenya.

    Just to be clear, if you EVER thought that was true, I am calling you an idiot right now. Do you birther folks even know what the word idiot means?! LOL – it’s sort of a big word for you meat heads.

  4. mike from iowa

    Added benefit is a real boost to local economies as poorer folks spend all their meager income every month. So tell me, Wingnuts, how do you want poor folks to save money for private schools or insurance savings accounts when they have no disposable income?
    Damn iowan always looking to start a fight! GRRRR!

  5. “We need a President who buys into and promotes fake news as if it were real.”
    – Conservatives #1 through #10,000,000

  6. Porter Lansing

    Right on, BCB. Helping marginalized people get food is God’s work. A detail that’s often overlooked by those holding the firehose of negativity is that SNAP is means tested. A senior citizen that receives around $1250 a month from Social Security now qualifies for $15 a month in food stamps. Many believe that everyone on food stamps is getting “big bucks” toward their budget. It’s just not true. That $15, however makes the recipient a tally on the total number of recipients counted.

  7. Robert McTaggart

    Trump says to cancel the Boeing order for Air Force One. There goes the American manufacturing.

  8. mike from iowa

    Total gubmint debt can be laid at the footsteps of the no taxes ever party of anti-American wingnuts. They do not understand, yet, how gubmint works.

  9. mike from iowa

    How many trillions of taxable dollars are hiding off shore waiting for the korporate tax rate to drop to zero so the wealthy’s wealthiest wealth can be repatriated tax free. Drumpf says he wants a 15% korporate tax rate maximum.

  10. Robert McTaggart

    Who knows what evil lurks in the hearts of men? The Shadow knows!


  11. Roger Cornelius

    I’ll have to go along with Bear’s assessment that food stamps are a positive.
    Not only is it good that more people are eating better or even eating at all, food stamps help retailers more than they may help the users.
    Walmart, Safeway or your local grocery chain are the real beneficiaries of SNAP spending.

  12. Porter Lansing

    Troy Jones … Of course you’re of the belief that these numbers are invalid because the Obama Administration changed the reporting paradigm but aside from that, will you publicly declare that we Dem Liberals are better at running an economy than your Republicans?
    We’ll even give you the benefit and call these results an outlier but if the Trump Administration’s numbers are below these at the end of his term, won’t you then have to admit our superiority? That will be two times in a row that Republicans drove the economy into the ditch and the voters called on Democratic altruism to “tow truck” it back to solid ground. Of course you will, if you’re to have any validity as a venture capitalist. Game On.

  13. “Rich people should to have to pay any taxes, poor people are selfish.”
    – Conservatives #1 through #10,000,000

  14. Should NOT* [sorry folks]

  15. Amazing the chicken PAUL Ryan backing off of privatizing Social Security.What Thune talked about running for senate for younger people .Just quit putting money into it and it will go away.Photo op and Paul Ryan what a pair.

  16. Republicans announced the day of Obama’s first election that their only goal was shut him down at every turn – and upon his inauguration declared he is already the worst President in U.S. history. Meat heads don’t know how to think.

    So, get ready, for people like ne to get as rude as you meat heads have always been. You want to make the White House into a reality TV show – and so FU!

  17. Roger Cornelius

    President and the First Lady Michele Obama have left us a lot more to be admired.
    They were always the epitome of style, grace and class, they represented their offices with the respect they are due.
    There were no scandals, not to say the fake news people and a disgusting congress didn’t try.
    Whether the Obama haters like it or not, President Obama will go down in history as one of the most relevant presidents ever.

  18. President Obama saved our bacon right after he took office by sending $100 million or so to SD as stimulus for state government. Rounds and his GOP Party crew would have had a very tough go of it without that influx of money, but don’t expect them to give the President any credit for bailing their arses out. Whatever national debt President Obama generated digging the country out of the Bush depression, Trump is going to double it by cutting taxes on billionaires and increasing spending.

  19. Clinton’s popular vote lead is now a staggering 2,672,911. That’s a landslide!


  20. With absentee ballots still trickling in from overseas Hillary is currently at 65,519,461 votes. By comparison, in 2012 President Obama got 65,915,795 votes.

  21. And if President Clinton hadn’t initiated measures that ultimately led to the economic collapse in 2008, Obama would not have had to bail us out, but rather could have led a better presidency.

    It was under the Clinton administration that the HUD:
    – gave banks higher ratings for home loans made in “credit-deprived” areas, and limited their ability to expand lending if they didn’t.

    – lowered down payments from 20% to 3% and ultimately 0%

    – ordered Fannie & Freddie to expand their quota of risky loans from 30% to 50% of its portfolio, and offer 100% taxpayer backing of these loans.

    All of this was done with the best of intentions; W. Bush continued them under the auspice of helping people afford a home. But ultimately these were the people hurt the most during the crash.

    There’s plenty of blame to go around for the great recession. If you think it was just the fault of one party, you’re living in an alternate universe.

  22. Darin Larson

    Wayne B.- I’m not saying that there isn’t some blame to go around, but the primary blame has to be on the Bush Administration. Many people saw the housing bubble and bad loan crisis coming years in advance. There needed to be a course correction. The fact that Clinton started us down a path doesn’t mean we had to continue on the same path. Wall Street needed to be reigned in as well and the Bush Administration had no appetite for properly regulating Wall Street. We were 7-8 years into the Bush years when the bubble burst. It was not like Clinton left office the year before the crap hit the fan.

  23. mike from iowa

    Since Clinton had a histile congress bent on impeaching his ass, niothing he did as Potus was done in a vacuum. Wingnuts get the lion’s share of blame for the collapse in 2008. Everyone of of dumbass dubya’s policies was designed to make America fail. That was a stated wingnut policy-starve the gubmint so welfare for the poor could be written off the budget and more taxbreaks for the wealthy would rule the day.

  24. W Admin, and Republicans, were all about “spreading freedom.” The term was also used to build support for getting rid of regulations (cause, ya know, meat heads think regulations kill freedom) and at the time, “family values” were the GOP flavor of the month.

    Now a days, they embrace authoratariamism like never before and reject family values. Conserva-voters don’t really know who the heck they are. I beg you people to figure out who the hell you actually are.

  25. Hint: when you grow up, you can be whatever you want.

  26. I first read your headline as if it had a comma after US: “Obama Leaves US, and SD Mostly Better Off”. Took me a couple seconds to unsee it.

  27. Uh oh! I can see that now, too, Mike! It’s a good thing I didn’t go for the journalistic headline comma.