May was a bad month for the incumbent president, and as a veteran political pundit I didn’t think things could get any worse for Obama. They have. The jobs numbers are terrible, his poll numbers are tanking, his foreign policy is in shambles, and even his Commerce Secretary was forced to resign this week. And on top of all that, his signature piece of legislation is about to get thrown under the bus in a devastating Supreme Court decision next week.
Today’s Gallup poll shows the president at his worst job approval rating of the year at 43%. His reelection chances have gone from a slight chance of winning to a slight chance of losing. It’s still a tossup race for November, but the trajectory is looking terrible for President Obama. Meanwhile, most recent nationwide polls show the president slightly trailing, including Gallup’s own poll which over-samples minority and Democrat voters. And all of the swing states are trending in the wrong direction. There was one small bit of hopeful news that Democrats clung to earlier in the week — a Bloomberg poll — but the seriously flawed assumptions in it have caused everyone to discard its results. At this point in the race, Obama is trailing Romney, and he is falling in the polls while Romney is rising.
There was no worse moment for the President than his photo op with Russia’s Putin. There was a confident Putin and a sagging Obama, famously known for happy faces collapsing his shoulders in resignation and refusing to even make eye contact with the veteran leader. A picture is worth a thousand words, and in that photo we see what is wrong with the president’s foreign policy and in a larger sense President Obama himself. He carried with him into office the naivety of liberals everywhere who thought the world would love us more if mean old America were somehow nicer. Instead, the world is now experiencing more strife than at any time since the second world war. The middle east is collapsing, the president is losing the Afghan War, and yes, even his naive “reset” policy with Russia has made him a laughing stock in that country.
We could continue to document Obama’s problems now, but we all know them already. I’m more curious to hear from our readers. What if anything can Obama do between now and November to give the public enough confidence in his leadership to reelect him?