The Washington Post

Past Obama voters reconsider

There’s nothing more random and unscientific than “man on the street” interviews, and so any thoughts gleaned in such a fashion must carry an asterisk denoting potential irrelevance. But President Obama's campaign might want to hear what a few voters were saying this morning in West Tampa. All three voted for Obama four years ago. One is now in the Mitt Romney camp and the other two are wavering.

“I voted for Obama, and I will not vote for him again,” said Sandy Garcia, 50, a sales rep having lunch at the West Tampa Sandwich Shop. Four years ago, she said, “I bought into the excitement about Obama.” Now she’s disillusioned, and worried about the country. And she loved the Ann Romney speech Tuesday night.

“I didn’t know anything about her, good or bad. She cleared up a lot of worries I had,” she said.

A block away, at another Cuban restaurant, El Gallo de Oro, a couple of old friends sat on the outdoor patio as a black cloud blotted out the morning sun and threatened to unleash a tempest.

“I’m so damned pissed off with the Congress, I think they should get rid of all of them,” said Jorge Miranda, 80, a retired post office worker.

“You’re reading my mind,” said his friend Jorge Ramos, 85.

“The president I don’t think means much of anything because they can’t do [anything] without them,” Miranda said.

“The country is being run by the wealthy. That’s why we don’t have much of anything, because they are controlling all the wealth. The gasoline, the banks,” Ramos said.

Both are Democrats. Both voted for Obama 2008. This time?

“Maybe Romney. I’m not sure,” Miranda said. “Things are not going too good.” Ramos said he’s always voted Democratic, but so far he’s undecided.

Joel Achenbach writes on science and politics for the Post's national desk and on the "Achenblog."

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