James Pethokoukis

Politics and policy from inside Washington

Obama 2012, the dollar and the stink of instability

April 21, 2011

President Obama’s approval/disapproval ratings are now an upside-down 45 percent/50 percent, according to the RealClearPolitics average. If those numbers were to hold until Election Day 2012, Obama would be a decided underdog for a second term, at least that is what statistical  modeling tells:

Mr. Obama’s approval ratings have been varying in recent months: between about 45 and about 50 percent. If Mr. Obama’s approval rating is at the top of that range, 50 percent, on Nov. 6, 2012 — about where it is now — the model figures that his chances of winning re-election will be greater than 80 percent. But if his approval rating is at the bottom of the range instead, at 45 percent, his chances for a second term will be only about one in three, and he’ll have to hope that the Republican nominee is a weak one.

And here are Obama numbers in chart form:

rcpapril

Almost as worrisome for the White House is this chart looking at the direction of the country:

track

I think what’s at play here is more than just gas prices, though that’s a big part of it. You also have the sliding dollar, S&P’s debt warning, high unemployment, flat or falling incomes, a depressed housing sector. Obama may have won in 2008 even without the financial crisis, but it was that meltdown that allowed him to crush John McCain. And since then, he keeps repeating how his policies have pulled America out of the ditch, like in a speech last year in New York:

“After they drove the car into the ditch, made it as difficult as possible for us to pull it back, now they want the keys back. “No! You can’t drive. We don’t want to have to go back into the ditch. We just got the car out.”

But the recovery feels both weak and unsustainable, like nothing has been fixed since 2008. Do Americans feel like the nation is on the verge of another 25-year boom or like it’s on the precipice? Right along with the slide in Obama’s approval ratings and this latest downturn in public confidence has been the decline in the dollar. Just look at the US Dollar Index:

dollar

Comments

Vote Obama out before the country is destroyed.

Posted by JohnDavis | Report as abusive
 

S&P for the first time in history under any President has downgraded the outlook for the nations AAA credit rating! Obama’s massive corrupt wasted spending and mountains of debt have pushed the entire nation to the edge of financial collapse. That is bad enough, but his foreign policy of bows, apology, and appeasement has collapsed with our friends feeling betrayed, our adversaries gleeful and on the move, and the Middle East in total chaos. This and the falling dollar are pushing gas prices to $6 or $7 per gallon because Obama’s NO-Energy policy has left us with no additional domestic supply from Alaska or offshore. Either or both of those failures should be enough for any President, but not Obama. Things weren’t bad enough so Obama decided, while playing soccer in Brazil, to launch a useless, endless, costly, unauthorized war against a nation that was no threat to the U.S….Libya! Syria and Iran are busy slaughtering their democracy protestors, but that not important to Obama. He’s only worried about innocents in Libya, and he’s willing to bomb them to save them! Obama is the greatest disaster we’ve seen in the oval office in the last or this century! He’s even made Jimmy Carter look good!

Posted by valwayne | Report as abusive
 

With President Clinton holding a jobs summit in America and addressing corporate America, and President Obama investigating gas and oil manipulations, things will probably start to turn sometime in the near future.
Of course we’ll have to worry that special interest and the military industrial complex doesn’t make something happen to change the world condition or cause oil to go up?? Anythings possible when it comes down to billions of dollars, big oil and special interest.

Posted by cocostar | Report as abusive
 

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