Employers continue to sack workers willy-nilly. One example: AT&T executives promised that the corporate tax cut would allow them to create more jobs. Instead, they've laid off 23,000.
Add to this that almost 80% of American workers are living paycheck to paycheck, and you get a feel for the havoc so many families are living in. Meanwhile, the costs of education, childcare, housing, and healthcare are skyrocketing. Trump hasn't done a thing to help. If anything, he's made everything worse. Student loan debt is in the stratosphere. Remember the old promise that if you took a public service job your student loan would be forgiven? You can forget it. Betsy DeVos's education department has rejected 98% of forgiveness applications. Housing is out of reach for young workers, which is why so many are living with their parents and postponing marriage. Yet Trump keeps cutting affordable housing. Childcare is becoming impossible. The average cost of center-based care for an infant is now $1,230 a month; $800 a month if you park the tot in a family childcare home. Health insurance is a nightmare. Last year alone, 30.4m Americans went without any coverage, about 1.1m more than the year before, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Health Interview Survey. That's the second year the figure has risen after years of declines after the Affordable Care Act. The reversal is largely because of Trump's efforts to kill the ACA. His administration is now asking a court to throw it out entirely. Co-payments and deductibles are out of control. According to a recent Gallup survey, Americans borrowed $88bn to pay for healthcare last year, and one in four people decided not to see a doctor because of cost. Trumpland has been especially hard hit. A quarter of working-age adults in Texas lack health insurance, for example. (In Massachusetts, it's 4.9%.) As if this weren't enough, Trump's trade wars have hammered rural America. Farm incomes are down $12bn in the first quarter of this year, according to the Department of Agriculture. Farm bankruptcies are at near record levels. Mulvany may be correct that people will vote for somebody they dislike if they think it's good for them. But Trump's economy isn't good for most people. If Democrats speak to the practical economic needs of Americans and offer realistic solutions, as they've started to do, Americans won't pay attention to overall economic statistics when they vote in 2020. They'll heed what's in their kitchen, and Trump will be toast.