North Carolina Will Be A Tough Pull For Obama In 2012

President Obama essentially won North Carolina in 2008, because the stars were just right. Don't expect the same in 2012 - the Tar Heel State will likely be Romney's to lose. Politico's Glenn Thrush and Donocan Slack have report:

North Carolina represented the high-water mark for the great Obama wave in 2008 — but he’s swimming against the tide there in 2012.

No state better illustrates the challenge Barack Obama faces in trying to consolidate the historic gains of his 2008 campaign at a time when hope, change and optimism have been supplanted by anger, skepticism and disillusionment.

It’s not merely that fewer than 45 percent of state voters approve of the job performance of the president who’s set to land there Tuesday, or that the state’s unemployment rate is pushing double digits. Or that both houses of the state Legislature flipped from blue to red in 2010.

Or even that a former top state Democratic official recently resigned amid accusations he sexually harassed a male staffer.

Obama’s Achilles Tarheel is the general lack of enthusiasm, especially among younger voters, that threatens to reverse his historic win in 2008, depriving him of a key part of his own map and imperiling his party’s tenuous foothold in the upper South.

The conventional wisdom has become that Romney’s the favorite in the state. But no one is predicting that Romney, who is having as much trouble connecting with working-class voters as Obama, will pull too far away in a state with 3 million Democrats, 2 million-plus Republicans and 1.5 million independents.

When Democratic pollster Public Policy Polling reported good news last week — President Obama holds a 5-point lead in this most challenging of swing states — the Raleigh-based firm felt compelled to add a buzz-kill disclaimer: “It’s unlikely,” they declared, that Obama will win by that much, if at all.

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published this page in In The News 2012-04-24 09:54:00 -0400
Analysis & Political Strategy