James Pethokoukis

Obama’s approval ratings on economy are plunging

April 28, 2011

This new Marist poll has to rings some alarm bells in the White House (and  keep in mind this tracks registered voters):

Downside risks to a Ryan presidential run

April 26, 2011

Some excellent points by AllahPundit:

Would he be a unifying, consensus figure? He voted for TARP, the tax on AIG bonuses, and the auto bailout. Some would forgive him for that given his leadership on the 2012 budget, but some — like the libertarian wing — wouldn’t. Meanwhile, Democrats are planning to use his budget proposal to drive a wedge within the party by forcing a vote in the Senate and making centrist Republicans choke on the Medicare and tax provisions. Collins has already said she opposes his program; doubtless there are others. Imagine a presidential campaign where the candidate’s signature piece of legislation is hit with attack ads showcasing opposition from the moderates in his own party.

2012 electoral map — as it stands

April 21, 2011

This is how 2012 looks right now to elections guru Larry Sabato:

electoralmap

Here is how the math works: Include the “Leans” states with the “Likely” and “Safe,” the numbers are as follows: 247 Democratic EVs,  180 Republican EVs, 111 Undecided. Just counting “Likely” and “Safe,” the numbers are as follows: 196 Democratic EVs, 170 Republican EVs, 172 Undecided.

The politics of S&P’s U.S. debt warning

April 18, 2011

OK, so Standard & Poor’s has downgraded the outlook for the U.S. to negative, saying it believes there’s a risk policymakers may not reach agreement on how to address the country’s long-term fiscal pressures.

Palin in Madison: Veni, Vidi, Vici

April 16, 2011

Sarah Palin rides to the sound of the guns. It was a chilly, wet and blustery afternoon in Madison, Wisconsin — one more appropriate for a late-season Packers game than a springtime political rally. The stirring NFL Films theme,  “The Classic Battle,” would’ve been a more apt musical choice than Van Halen’s “Right Now” to accompany Palin as she entered the stage outside the state capital building to address thousands of Tea Party members, along with a good number of extremely hostile, expletive-hurling government union rowdies.

Obama approval now down to 41 percent: Gallup

April 15, 2011

Gallup has Obama’s approval ratings down to 41 percent (with 50 percent disapproving) and just 35 percent among independents. Ratings like this put an incumbent president deep in the red as far as reelection.  They just don’t get reelected with ratings under 48 percent —  and only a 1/3 chance with a rating of 45 percent.

Just how fragile are Obama’s approval ratings?

April 8, 2011

Quite, says my pal Jay Cost over at TheWeeklyStandard:

President Obama’s overall job approval is split 47-47, but the numbers underneath it are not good at all. On the economy, AP-GfK has him at -6, Gallup at -17, Quinnipiac at -26, and CBS at -14. On health care, AP-GfK has him above water (+4), but Gallup and Quinnipiac have him at -17 and -16, respectively. Meanwhile, check out the right track/wrong track numbers, which are as negative as they have been at any point during Obama’s tenure.

How the economy may undermine Obama’s 2012 reelection hopes

April 7, 2011

It’s not just the labor market that worries Team Obama:

“We are making progress on jobs and need to make more progress on jobs,” said David Axelrod, a former senior White House aide who is part of Obama’s 2012 campaign team. “But people are also grappling with stagnant wages and rising prices. That’s a legitimate, important concern for people and we have to pay close attention to it.”

Incomes, not jobs, could sink Obama re-election

April 3, 2011

The Obama 2012 presidential campaign, which has now officially sprung to life, confronts a vexing political puzzle. The unemployment rate is plummeting. After the March jobs report release, White House economic adviser Austan Goolsbee pointedly noted that the full percentage-point decline over the past four months is the largest such drop since 1984.