Actual State of the Union, by the Numbers

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President Bush is expected to hail the state of the union as strong tonight, but for Americans worrying about how to make ends meet, the country is headed in the wrong direction, according to numbers compiled today by the Campaign for America’s Future.

On Incomes:

–Median household income in 2000: $47,599
–Median household income in 2005: $46,326
(US Census Bureau, Table H-8. Median Household Income by State: 1984 to 2005)

–Salary of a full-time minimum wage employee without vacation: $10,712
–Average time for top CEOs to earn that sum: 2.06 hours
(Forbes Magazine. “What the Boss Makes.” April 20, 2006)

–Federal minimum wage in 2000: $5.15/hr
–Federal minimum wage in 2006: $5.15/hr
–Loss in purchasing power, full time worker annually: $1,562

On Energy Prices:

–Average price of home heating oil on Jan. 3, 2000: $1.15 per gallon
–Average price of home heating oil on Jan. 1, 2007: $2.42 per gallon
(U.S. Energy Information Admin. Jan. 4, 2007)

–Average price of gasoline on Jan. 3, 2000: $1.31 per gallon
–Average price of gasoline on Jan. 1, 2007: $2.38 per gallon
(U.S. Energy Information Admin. Jan. 5, 2007)

–Exxon Mobil profits in 2000: $7.9 billion
–Exxon Mobil profits in 2006: $36.1 billion
(CNNMoney.com, accessed Jan. 19, 2007)

On Education:

–Average cost of a year at a public four-year college in 2000: $9,958
–Average cost of a year at a public four-year college in 2006: $12,796
(Costs include tuition, fees, room & board. MSN Money 2000/Associated Press. Jan. 14, 2005. College Board. Trends in College Pricing 2007)

On Health Care Costs:

–Americans without health insurance, 2000: 38.2 million
–Americans without health insurance, 2005: 46.6 million
(US Census Bureau, Sept. 2001; US Census Bureau, Aug. 2006)

–Average monthly worker contribution for family coverage in 2000: $135
–Average monthly worker contribution for family coverage in 2006: $248
–Personal bankruptcies due to medical bills: 55 percent
(The Kaiser Family Foundation, Sept. 26, 2006; Health Affairs Health Policy Journal, Feb. 2, 2005)

On Debts and Deficits:

–Monthly U.S. Trade Deficit in October 2000: $33.8 billion
–Monthly U.S. Trade Deficit in October 2006: $58.9 billion
(U.S. Census Bureau Foreign Trade Statistics. Jan. 10, 2007)

–Loss of value of U.S. dollar relative to the Euro, Jan. 24, 2000 to Jan. 23, 2006: 23 percent
(X-rate.com, accessed Jan. 23, 2006)

–US Budget Deficit in FY 2000: $230 billion surplus
–US Budget Deficit in FY 2006: $423 billion deficit
(White House Office of Management and Budget. Budget of the United States Government, Historical Tables, Fiscal Year 2007; White House Office of Management and Budget. Table S-1. 2006 budget totals)

–US National Debt in FY 2000: $5.7 trillion
–US National Debt in FY 2006: $8.5 trillion
(Bureau of the Public Debt, Jan. 16, 2007)

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And the truth is, going into the final 4 days of the year we still needed to raise $TK to hit our $350,000 goal and start 2021 on track. It's nerve-wracking, wondering if the big spike we normally see at the end of December is going to be another thing that doesn't go as planned in 2020, or worse, if, now that Donald Trump is set to leave the White House (for longer than a taxpayer-funded golf trip to a property he owns), folks might be pulling back from fighting for the truth and a democracy and think the hard work is done.

It's not, and if you can right now, please consider a year-end donation to support our team's fearless nonprofit journalism so we can close that big fundraising gap and finish the year strong, ready for all that's ahead in 2021. Whether you can give $5 or $500, it all matters in keeping us charging hard, and we'd be grateful.

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