Numbers tell us lots of things:
▪ 61. The percentage of Missourians who disapproved of the job Gov. Jay Nixon has done overseeing Ferguson, Mo., according to a new survey by the Republican pollsters Remington Research. Only 23 percent approved.
Nixon’s overall job approval, once routinely in the 50s, has sunk to 28 percent.
▪ 600. The number of manufacturing jobs Kansas has regained since the recession. The state lost 29,300 manufacturing jobs between April 2008 and February 2010.
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The manufacturing jobs aren’t expected to return, experts said. The good news: The state has regained the private-sector jobs it lost during the down years.
▪ 3. The (pathetically low) number of times that President Barack Obama and incoming Senate Majority Leader Mitch McConnell have met face-to-face without other lawmakers, including a meeting Wednesday. The two discussed reforming the tax code.
They have a chilly history, with McConnell once saying his goal was to make Obama a one-termer.
▪ 5. The number of net points Republicans have gained as the party of preference for Americans. Republicans are now favored over Democrats 42 to 41 percent. Pre-election, it was 43 to 39 percent Democrats, Gallup said.
▪ 67. The percentage of Americans who think the country’s on the wrong track, according to an Economist poll. Just 23 percent said we’re headed the right direction.
▪ 83. The record number of women who will serve in the 435-member U.S. House come January. It might reach 84, pending the results of one too-close-to-call Arizona race.
▪ 75. The percentage of U.S. senators who began their Senate careers after the Sept. 11 attacks. Translation: Turnover has come to the world’s most deliberative body.
▪ 11. The percentage of Republicans who approve of Obama’s undocumented immigrant plan, compared to 79 percent who oppose it.
▪ 52. The percentage of Republicans who backed President George W. Bush’s similar immigration plan in 2006, compared to 44 percent who opposed it. Yes, one big difference is Obama isn’t taking his plan to Congress.
▪ 0.4 percent: The rise in hourly earnings in November, double what economists had expected and possibly a sign that the benefits of the economic recovery are reaching the pocketbooks of everyday Americans. The increase might eventually boost the next number.
▪ 42 percent. Obama’s latest Gallup job approval rating, compared to 52 percent who disapproved. Ugly.
To reach Steve Kraske, call 816-234-4312 or send email to email@example.com.