By the numbers
April 1, 2020

The number of deaths resulting from the novel COVID-19 coronavirus are rising swiftly.

A data visualization created Wednesday by Dr. Maria Danilychev shows just how fast COVID-19 became the third leading daily killer in the United States behind only heart disease and cancer.

There are a couple of caveats, however. The chart puts the coronavirus data, pulled from Worldometers, up against the latest mortality data from the Centers for Disease and Control and Prevention from 2018. The CDC set actually shows average daily deaths, while the deaths from coronavirus in the visualization represent individual days, rather than the average, which would register lower on the scale.

Still, the data highlights the trajectory of the virus, and the average number of deaths per day will almost certainly continue to increase for some time. Tim O'Donnell

March 30, 2020

Back in February, a Siena College poll showed that only 44 percent of New Yorkers viewed their Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) favorably. Then, the coronavirus pandemic hit.

Cuomo has received widespread praise for his calm, cool, and collected approach as he guides the country's epicenter through the COVID-19 outbreak, and his constituents are on the bandwagon, as well. In March, Cuomo's favorability rating spiked to 71 percent, which is the highest it's been since he was first elected governor in 2011.

There's still a partisan split, but even Republicans in the state have shown some appreciation, as more than twice as many GOP voters approve of Cuomo now than last month.

Cuomo's numbers are even better when it just boils down to his coronavirus response, which has garnered an 87 percent satisfaction rate.

The spike makes sense — as former Vice President Joe Biden noted Sunday, Americans historically tend to rally around presidents during times of crisis, and there's no reason to think that wouldn't be the same for governors.

Siena College surveyed 566 registered New York voters between March 22 and 26. The poll has a margin of error of plus or minus 4.5 percentage points. Read more here. Tim O'Donnell

March 25, 2020

A plurality of COVID-19 cases in New York City are among those aged 18 to 44, but severity rates tend to follow global trends when it comes to age and underlying conditions, data from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene reveals.

Of the 15,597 confirmed as of Tuesday afternoon, 7,094, or 46 percent, were in patients below the 45. In that age group, 9 percent of people with the novel coronavirus have been hospitalized, and there have been five deaths.

All told, the data suggests the city is in line with other countries like Italy, which has reported that the majority of patients experiencing severe cases of COVID-19 are in older age groups, though that certainly doesn't mean younger people aren't at risk. In New York, more than one-fifth of fatalities have occurred in the 45 to 64 range.

Similarly, like Italy, most patients in New York who died after being infected with COVID-19 were suffering from at least one of a wide range of underlying conditions, though several cases are under investigation. Read the full data here. Tim O'Donnell

September 10, 2019

For the first time in a decade, the number of Americans without health insurance went up last year, the U.S. Census Bureau said Tuesday.

The bureau's annual report found that 27.5 million people, 8.5 percent of the American population, did not have health insurance in 2018, an increase of 1.9 million. The number of uninsured children and adults ages 35-64 also rose, The Associated Press reports. Under the Affordable Care Act, people were fined if they did not sign up for health insurance, but this fine was zeroed out under the Republican's 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act, which went into effect this year. The ACA covers about 20 million people.

The report also revealed that household income rose in 2018 at its slowest pace in four years, and the poverty rate dropped for the fourth year in a row to 11.8 percent. Catherine Garcia

February 24, 2019

President Trump closed a busy morning on Twitter Sunday with a post boasting of his national approval rating:

He was apparently referring to a Rasmussen Reports poll from Feb. 11 which did indeed put the president's approval rating at 52 percent. Since then, however, nine subsequent Rasmussen polls have seen it drop back to 49 percent, and the RealClearPolitics average of nine separate surveys — including polls from Rasmussen and Fox News — puts Trump's approval at just 44 percent, with 53 percent disapproval.

Looking ahead to 2020, measuring presidential approval at the state level may be the more profitable exercise. Gallup poll results published Friday show Trump has an approval rating of 50 percent or higher in 17 states, which together have just 102 of 538 Electoral College votes:

In another 16 states, Trump's approval is 40 percent or lower, and their combined Electoral College vote is 201. To win a second term, Trump would need 270 votes. Bonnie Kristian

September 24, 2018

Measuring the effect of a political endorsement is tricky: For some voters, it may be a determining factor. For others, it may simply match previously-held beliefs. But endorsements do offer a telling gauge of how a political party's base is thinking.

For the Republican Party in 2018, endorsements from President Trump and the Koch network correlate with victory by a large margin. Nearly 90 percent of the candidates who gained these coveted affirmations won their primary this year, a FiveThirtyEight analysis finds. No other endorser can boast above a two-thirds success rate.


"That's especially interesting given the Kochs' opposition to Trump's trade policies and Trump's public feud with the brothers," FiveThirtyEight notes. Charles Koch has said Trump's principles are "antithetical" to his own, calling the president's Muslim registry proposal "reminiscent of Nazi Germany," "monstrous," and "frightening."

Also interesting is what falls at the bottom of the list. For all the present furor over the possibility of a conservative-majority Supreme Court overturning Roe v. Wade, pro-life groups Right to Life and the Susan B. Anthony List are in the bottom third of endorsers.

FiveThirtyEight conducted a similar analysis of Democrats earlier this year and found former Vice President Joe Biden, Sen. Elizabeth Warren (D-Mass.), and Democratic Party committees were the standout endorsers. Bonnie Kristian

July 31, 2018

A single decade has seen the U.S. media industry shrink by nearly a quarter, a Pew Research analysis published Monday reports.

Newsroom jobs in America declined by 23 percent between 2008 and 2017, from 114,000 employees at newspapers, radio, cable, broadcast news, and digital-native outlets to just 88,000.

Newsroom employees include reporters, editors, photographers, and videographers. In every outlet category, reporters make up about half the newsroom staff.

Newspapers were hit particularly hard, losing 45 percent of employees over this time. Digital-native outlets fared the best, posting a gain of about 6,000 jobs. Broadcast television was the only other sub-sector to see improvement, reporting a slight expansion from 28,000 to 29,000 newsroom employees.

Read The Week's Ryan Cooper on why local government might be the solution to local newspapers' woes. Bonnie Kristian

June 28, 2018

President Trump is ramping up his denials about Russia having any hand in the 2016 election as well as his claims that there is some sort of conspiracy, or "witch hunt," against him. Last June, Trump tweeted about how there was "no collusion" or collusion specifically between the Russians and the Democrats five different times. By this spring, such tweets were in the double-digits:

Tweets about 'no collusion'

June 2017: 5

January 2018: 3

February 2018 : 8

March 2018: 6

April 2018: 9

May 2018: 13

June 1-28, 2018: 11 times, including three times today alone

There is a similar pattern when you trace Trump's use of the word "witch hunt," CNN's David P. Gelles noticed:

The same is also true for mentions of Special Counsel Robert Mueller, who is investigating links between the Trump campaign and the Kremlin, Politico's Kyle Cheney shared:

Ahead of the announcement that he would be meeting with Russian President Vladimir Putin next month, Trump tweeted Thursday: "Russia continues to say they had nothing to do with meddling in our election! Where is the DNC server, and why didn't Shady James Comey and the now disgraced FBI agents take and closely examine it? Why isn't Hillary/Russia being looked at? So many questions, so much corruption!"

CBS News' Mark Knoller offered the shorter version: "Pres repeats Kremlin denial, but charges FBI with corruption." Jeva Lange

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