The conventional wisdom has switched from “Romney can’t win” to “Time to panic — Obama could lose!” It’s early, and factors beyond anyone’s control (e.g. the euro, Iran) could impact the race. But there are at least 10 reasons why heightened concern, if not panic, is in order for Obama supporters.
1. Gallup reports: “Americans are more than twice as likely to identify themselves as conservative rather than liberal on economic issues, 46% to 20%. The gap is narrower on social issues, but conservatives still outnumber liberals, 38% to 28%.”
2. Ron Brownstein sounds like Right Turn: “Obama may not win another term unless he provides Americans a better idea of what he would do with it.”
3. Europe is a mess. “[G]rowing transfers of deposits out of troubled Spanish banks reflect a broader fear that the country’s problems could make it hard for Spaniards to get to their money if banks fail and cannot be supported by the government. In a worst case, some even worry their money will be worth substantially less if Spain is forced to leave the euro currency zone and re-adopt its old currency, the peseta. Money already has been pouring out of banks in Greece, where many citizens believe it is increasingly likely that their country will be forced to leave the euro zone. But for European policy makers and economists, the possibility of mini-runs on banks spreading from Greece to other, bigger countries like Spain — with 1 trillion euros, or $1.25 trillion, in bank deposits — poses a much more serious risk.”
4. Obama has lost the aura of invincibility, and the press smells blood in the water. “Nothing inspires Democrats like the Barack Obama swagger — the supreme self-confidence on stage, the self-certainty in private. So nothing inspires more angst than when that same Obama stumbles, as he has leaving the gate in 2012.”
5. Mitt Romney is giving memorable speeches ( on “a prairie fire of debt,” on education, etc.). President Obama gives the same anti-Bush, ant-Romney harangue over and over again.
7. Wisconsin Gov. Scott Walker (R) will help put public employee unions on the table in the presidential debate. It’s not a topic Obama wants to discuss.
8. The Bain attacks, the failed Iran talks and the state of the economy are forcing Democrats on the ballot in November to distance themselves from Obama. That provides fodder for both Romney and GOP down-ticket candidates as Democrats struggle to explain their votes and support for Obama’s agenda.
10. With each passing day Obama sounds less presidential. “Now, I know Governor Romney came to Des Moines last week; warned about a ‘prairie fire of debt.’ That’s what he said. [Laughter.] But he left out some facts. His speech was more like a cow pie of distortion. [Laughter.] I don’t know whose record he twisted the most — mine or his. [Laughter.]” And why is the debt funny?