Bernanke on Brexit’s Economic Implications  

The Brooking Institution’s Ben Bernanke, former Chair of the Federal Reserve, gave his take on the global and local economic implications of Brexit.

“Even more obvious now than before the vote is that the biggest losers, economically speaking, will be the British themselves. The vote ushers in what will be several years of tremendous uncertainty… Ironically, the sharp decline in the value of the pound may be a bit of a buffer here as, all else equal, it will make British exports more competitive.”

“The rest of Europe will also be adversely affected, even though Frankfurt and a few other cities may gain finance jobs at the expense of London. The biggest risks here are political, as has been widely noted: In particular, markets are already beginning to price in the risk that other countries or regions will press for greater autonomy from Brussels.”

“In the United States, the economic recovery is unlikely to be derailed by the market turmoil, so long as conditions in financial markets don’t get significantly worse: The strengthening of the dollar and the declines in U.S. equities are relatively moderate so far… However, clearly the Fed and other U.S. policymakers will remain cautious until the effects of the British vote are better sorted out.”

“Although bank stock prices are taking hits, especially in the U.K. and Europe, a financial crisis seems quite unlikely at this point.”

Could There Still Be An Electoral Landslide?

New York Times: “Based on evidence from the last three decades, polarization in American politics has eliminated landslide presidential victories. But could Donald J. Trump trigger one again?”

“For more than three decades after World War II, lopsided presidential victories occurred regularly.”

“Election outcomes have narrowed since. Information Age realignment hardened party lines, making Republicans and Democrats more ideologically distinct and reducing the ability of nominees to lure crossover votes.”

“[Donald Trump’s] extraordinary White House bid has raised the question. For Hillary Clinton, now leading solidly in the polls, it looms over strategic choices ranging from selection of a running mate to how she contrasts herself with the presumptive Republican nominee.”

 

Diversity Defines the Millennial Generation

A new Brookings Institution report considers the millennial generation’s role in reshaping America’s demographics.

While race is changing demographics, diversity has already affected the political landscape. This effect is poised to grow stronger in states with “racial generation gaps,” meaning wide gaps between percentages of white Americans ages 55+ and white Americans under 35. White millennials “have embraced positive attitudes toward diversity more openly than their elders,” which could have a profound impact on racial culture.

 

Clinton, Trump Gaining Favorability Within Parties

Hillary Clinton and Donald Trump have both seen increases in party favorability in recent months, Gallup reports. Keeping true to past trends, both have commanded rising level of support since becoming their party’s presumptive nominee.

Trump has seen a decrease in support among independents in the past month, while Clinton has seen a 3-point bump.

These numbers are still historically low for party nominees at this point in the race: Mitt Romney was viewed favorably by 82 percent of Republicans and President Obama garnered 88 percent favorability among Democrats in 2012.

Notably, though Trump’s favorability among Republicans is well above 50%, most Republicans would have preferred a different candidate, NBC News reports.

 

 

When the Eight-Member Supreme Court Avoids Deadlocks, It Leans Left

New York Times: “The court issued liberal decisions in 56 percent of cases so far this term, according to a widely accepted standard developed by political scientists that considers signed decisions in argued cases. The share is only slightly lower than in the 2014-15 term, which had the highest share of liberal decisions since the court led by Chief Justice Earl Warren in the 1950s and 1960s.”

“Each justice is now voting more with the majority in non-unanimous cases than in the past, with the exception of Justice Clarence Thomas. Justice Kennedy maintained his position as the court’s swing justice, while three of the liberal justices — Justice Elena Kagan, Justice Breyer and Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg — significantly increased their percentages in the majority.”

“Individual justice ideology scores, which are based on voting patterns, also illustrate the court’s leftward shift. With the exception of Justice Thomas, the conservative justice scores moved closer to their liberal counterparts.”

Supreme Court Strikes Down Texas Abortion Restrictions

New York Times: “The Supreme Court on Monday struck down parts of a restrictive Texas law that could have reduced the number of abortion clinics in the state to about 10 from what was once a high of roughly 40.”

“The 5-to-3 decision was the court’s most sweeping statement on abortion rights since Planned Parenthood v. Casey in 1992. It applied a skeptical and exacting version of that decision’s ‘undue burden’ standard to find that the restrictions in Texas went too far. The decision on Monday means that similar restrictions in other states are most likely also unconstitutional, and it imperils many other kinds of restrictions on abortion.”

 

Congress’ Harshest Critics Identify Their Complaints

A new Gallup poll identifies the factors that the 53% of Americans that rate Congress’s job performance poor or bad point to when complaining about the institution.

The majority say that Congress is distracted from helping its constituents and instead pays “too much attention to financial contributors” (56%) or “too much attention to special interests and lobbyists” (55%).

Anti-establishment sentiments are clear as well: 43% believe Congress “spends too much time campaigning and raising money,” while 32% believe congressmen “pay too much attention to party leaders.”

 

Trump’s Immigration Policies May Cause Trouble Among Independents, Poll Shows

New York Times: “Despite intense support among his followers for his proposals for a Mexican border wall and a ban on Muslim immigration,Donald J. Trump will face trouble with independent voters on immigration in the November election, according to a survey published on Thursday by the Public Religion Research Institute and the Brookings Institution, nonpartisan research organizations.”

Of independent voters, “58 percent of respondents said they opposed a border wall… 78 percent of independents — and the same percentage of Americans over all — said those [11 million illegal] immigrants should be allowed to become American citizens or legal residents.”

Robert P. Jones, chief executive of the Public Religion Research Institute, said Trump’s proposals are “a winning strategy for the Republican primary but are not connected to where the country is as a whole. If Trump continues to double and triple down on that message, he may run into a wall with independent voters.”