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Friday, December 17, 2010

Obama's Bad Numbers Are The Real Headline

The headline at The Washington Post, quite predictably, is that Sarah Palin's poll numbers are terrible.

But the more important story for 2012 is that Barack Obama has lost 44% of the voters, and has weak core support (emphasis mine):
Still, the survey shows limits to Obama's appeal. More than four in 10 voters - 44 percent - say they would not even consider voting for him in 2012, with about one in four definitively behind him. Among independents, 40 percent say they would not vote for him, 36 percent say they would consider it and 21 percent say they would certainly back him.
This number is consistent with polling over the past two years which shows that Obama has lost -- irretrievably -- a percentage of voters in the mid-40s range.

As I've pointed out before, the most important poll I have seen was taken by Democratic pollster PPP in October 2009, asking the provocative question, "Do you think that Barack Obama loves America?"

The responses were as follows: Yes (59%), No (26%), Not Sure (14%). I have not seen a similar question polled since then, but I would venture to guess the numbers would be even more negative. But even using those more than year-old numbers, the picture is bleak for Obama when 40% of the voters either think he does not love America, or are not sure.

This mid-40s anti-Obama vote is consistent with polling on whether Obama was born in Hawaii, with a majority either uncertain or believing Obama was born elsewhere.

Charles Krauthammer believes that Obama already is the comeback kid because of the "tax deal." 

I have made that point before, but there are limits to how far Obama can come.  Obama has lost approximately 45% of the population, and he will not get that vote back no matter what he does.

As with 2010, in 2012 the key will be whether Obama can recapture the base and moderate Democrats, and the independents.  The Washington Post poll indicates that Obama remains weak with independents, definitely having lost 40% of them.

Taking 45% of voters overall and 40% of independents off the table leaves Obama little room to maneuver.

With a weak Obama who has little margin for error, does this make the choice of Republican even more important? 

Let's rekindle the "conservative and uninspiring but low negatives" versus "conservative and dynamic but high negatives" debate.

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  1. I've long held the opinion that when people are criticizing you, you're being effective!

  2. Well, how about Mike Pence? I think it's as good as we're going to get.

  3. I agree that there are limits to how far BO can come back, even with the "comeback kid" tax bill. I don't recall any president evoking the question of his love for America (that alone makes me wonder if he can possibly win reelection--when you doubt that your president loves the country he leads . . . well, that can't be good. For anyone.). Has any similar question been posed regarding any previous president?

    And you're also right that he has irrevocably lost a great many voters, including those who voted for him in '08 but will not do so again (as you say) no matter what he does. People like Krauthammer too often don't take things that matter to voters into account, putting almost too emphasis on jobs and the economy (as if BO is Carter or Clinton--just another prog lib but one who fundamentally does love America) and not enough on the character (or lack thereof) of this particular president.

  4. I'm not sure how much of a "comeback kid" he's going to be a year and a half from now when the economy is still sluggish.

  5. Has there ever before been wide spread public opinion that a sitting American president doesn't love his country?

  6. Agree so much with the comment about Obama's character. The Tea Party itself was not formed just because of spending. If BO had been a more mainstream, pro-American president, he might have gotten away with more. But when he came out of the gate giving early interviews to Al-Jazeera and speeches to Cairo,constatntly glorifies islam, spends his first year on the global apology tour, and covers up Christian symbols when he speaks....

    Well, Americans do not like outsiders to slam their country and culture. And that's exactly how they look at Obama -- as an outsider, insulting the rest of us. And that, ALONG with jobs and the economy, is why he has lost so many voters. (And of course, he has done nothing to win those who saw through him from the campaign on.)

  7. When polled, William and Kate said Obama doesn't love America or her traditional ally across the pond.

    They should invite the Palins to their wedding to-do.

    I'm on the dynamic and solidly conservative despite the (real and manufactured) high negatives side of the debate you propose. I despair at the thought of similar media-mongers such as dandy passport Bloomberg or social con-opportunist Rick Perry stealing the show, and a show it is.

    Are solid character, smarts, political and business savvy, and the "right" ideological orientation enough to raise a campaign warchest, muscle out fierce party competition and win over the electorate in an age when elections have come to be more spectacle and advertisment than reasoned contention?

    Who are we kidding-- when have elections ever been about sober choices? And now there are TV ops and flops! And Michael Moore movies!

    We don't need a demagogue or orotund orator, but a telegenic principled candidate who can "connect" via the cam and mike and convince us his love for this country is nearly as big as his (or her) outsized political ego.

  8. Krauthammer's cheerleading notwithstanding, I think there is a small probablity he won't run for re-election.

    When he announced the tax compromise deal, he came off as completely fed up. He managed to piss off Republicans, Democrats, the NYT, and the WSJ in one brief press conference. I remember thinking he either hates his job or he hates to have to compromise. If he hates compromise, he's going to be miserable next year when the Republicans actually have a say in things. And if he hates his job, then why run? Is preventing repeal of the healthcare disaster that the majority of Americans hate worth 4 more years of misery?

    The other reason why I think there's a slim chance that he may not run is his approval ratings. He's at 40%. There was a story last year pointing out that since gallup has been conducting polls, in the last poll prior to the election no president has been re-elected when his approval rating was below 47%, and no president with an approval rating higher than 52% has ever lost. The outcome is mixed when the ratings are between 47% and 52%.

    So, with that information, and with his approval ratings at 40%, will major donors want to finance his campaign? If his approval ratings had bottomed and were now trending up, giving them hope he could get to about 50% by Nov. 2012, then I'd say they will take the risk and finance the campaign. But so far, his approval ratings are making new lows. And if they decide not to run him for re-election, that decision will have to be made by when? About June 2011 at the latest? That doesn't leave alot of time to turn his approval ratings around. I'm sure the tax deal was as much about trying to turn his approval ratings around as it was about policy. His handlers must be on pins and needles waiting for the approval rating polls that are conducted after the tax deal to be published.

  9. Vladdy you forgot, bowing down before the Saudi King

  10. Prediction: Sarah Palin will win the nomination in 2012. She is only getting stronger. Plus, she doesn't have to declare until nearly the last minute. Can Mitt Romney get any press? Can Bloomerberg? Can Huckabee (except on his own lame "paul harvey" knockoff radio show? If Sarah waits til the "white of their eyes" moment, and chooses Marco Rubio as her running mate, it is game over. Looks and political ferocity and a great cabinet---- they blow everyone away....and the political insiders of the GOP will be blown downwind.

    One last thing: the man who created the Republican machinery that brought Ronald Reagan into the White House is in Sarah Palin's corner. If you do not know this man's name, I suggest to you, if you call yourself a conservative, do your homework at find out. Here is a hint: to the point.

    Be optimistic about the future of this country. The Left and the One World Government creeps have always overreached when it comes to taking over. It brought them Lincoln's assasination, Lenin, the First World War, Stalin, Hitler, and the Japanese Imperialists, World Communism and the Crazed Soros-financed Shariat Banking Cartels.

    They do not represent the truth and no amount of the ENEMEDIA blackout treatment of reality can change that fact. No amount of Sleazy Pelosicrat machinations in Congress can cover the lie.

    When the Left was saying "Bush lied and people died" they know they are canting and recanting a lie. What they claim were lies have been exhonorated as truth--- in the weirdest ways, Wikileaks.

    The Left is a lie based on ignorant things they believe. They have shot off both feet getting OsamaObama elected. They have ruined their credibility over their election of the "first black president in America". What a farce!

    The enlightenment in America continues and we must exercise patience and refrain from judging those who are still prospective allies sleeping under the appearance of GOP propriety in the face of this Constitutional crisis.

    Have a great holiday season. Get sober in 2011 and get into peak physical shape. You will need both in order to participate in the maelstroms ahead as the Left fights through the ENEMEDIA to convince you we need to compromise with their death wishes for our Nation.

    I feel like Samuel Adams. And I don't mean the beer.

  11. My knock against President Obama before his election was that as a sheltered, favored individual, he didn't know how to come back. When has he ever in his life been behind? Clinton was Governor of Arkansas, lost re-election, came back and won the next election. People who have never been knocked down don't know how to get up. Witness the health care debate. President Obama thought all he needed to do was explain it to the public one more time. He probably thinks that all he needs to do is explain his positions to us, once we see the light we will agree with him. Sorry I'm so slow.

  12. Krauthammer is trying to bolster Obama cuz the alternative is Palin, and he will not abide that. She's not of the right class, you know, old chap.

  13. Just for the sake of discussion: what about a new category, "conservative and inspiring enough but low negatives"?

    (The VP pick and key cabinet roles can always be filled with members of the other two categories if this hypothetical candidate is successful).

  14. I didn't catch that Krauthammer was boosting Obama so much as describing the possible ways he could come back and win the next election.

    Yes, things have come to a pretty pass when you even have to ask if the president loves America. And I deeply regret to say that I don't think he does, at least not until it had the good sense to elect him.

    However the question is answered it's worth noting that he seems very liberal, as it were, with reciting our faults, both real and imagined, but seems sparing about saying anything that shows pride in the US.

  15. Chris Christie, folks, Chris Christie. Sarah won't run because it would be too much of a pay cut for her. Mind you, I adore the woman: "Everything I ever needed to know, I learned on the basketball court." Perfect. Exactly. But Chris is a street fighter and the '12 Prez election is gonna be as dirty a brawl as anything we've seen in our lifetimes. The Sixties Hippie Libs have just seen the Low Fuel light on their dashboards, and they will be in full desperation mode.

    Obama's toast. He reads his own book to second graders at a photo-op? Pencil in H. Rodham Clinton right now, and then let's figure out how to deal with that scenario...

  16. Obama doesn't love America. He only loves himself.

  17. Will everyone stop looking at poll numbers and start asking themselves who they think SHOULD be the next president? We have just under two years to go before we can elect the next one, and just over one year before we pick the challenger. Stop worrying about where everyone polls and pick the one you think should be elected.