What does everyone think?
1. Power of Incumbency
In the last 56 U.S. presidential elections, 31 have involved incumbents; 21 of those candidates have won more than one term. Based on these historical odds, Obama has a better-than-67-percent chance of winning reelection. In 2004, voters were not happy with the economy, the Iraq War or President Bush generally, and still he was reelected.
2. The Love Story Continues
Though the mainstream media is now sometimes critical of President Obama, he has never faced the extreme 24-hour-a-day derangement that has plagued other recent presidents and potential candidates-to-be. This gentle treatment is worth millions to a campaign.
3. Billion-Dollar Campaign
According to Chris Cillizza of The Washington Post, President Obama’s 2012 reelection effort could be the first campaign to raise $1 billion. Not an unreasonable assumption because he raised $750 million in 2008. Look for the coming campaign to break all fundraising and spending records on both sides.
4. Experienced Campaign Organization
In 2008, the junior senator from Illinois assembled a team of outsiders that defeated the Clinton machine and won the presidency with 365 electoral votes to Sen. John McCain’s 173. With the same Chicago campaign team in place, Obama will benefit from experience and memory; mistakes won’t be repeated.
5. Obama’s Charm Offensive
Let’s face it, Obama knows how to turn it on and win crowds with his oratory. He is personally likable, has an attractive family, and his favorables are climbing. His Real Clear Politics average is at 49.9 percent. That’s comfortably within the zone of the last three presidents to win reelection. At 752 days into the first term, according to Gallup, President Reagan’s approval rating fell to 37 percent. Clinton’s was at 47 percent, and George W. Bush’s was 61 percent. If history is any guide, Obama has nothing to fear at this point from Mr. Gallup.
6. Economy is Improving
As the economy goes, so goes Obama’s reelection prospects. Yes, this is a potential weakness, but there are signs of hope. And what is most important is not what voters think about the economy at this hour, but rather whether they think it is improving. The stock market is rising, and unemployment is trending downward, albeit too slowly. Consumer spending is up, and 40 percent of Americans say the economy will improve over the next year. The campaign theme may be: He brought us back from the brink.