A majority of voters believe the country is worse off today than it was four years ago and that President Obama does not deserve reelection, according to a new poll for The Hill. Fifty-two percent of likely voters say the nation is in “worse condition” now than in September 2008, while 54 percent say Obama does not deserve reelection based solely on his job performance. Only 31 percent of voters believe the nation is in “better condition,” while 15 percent say it is “about the same,” the poll found. Just 40 percent of voters said Obama deserves reelection. The results highlight the depth of voter dissatisfaction confronting Obama as he makes his case for a second term at this week’s Democratic National Convention in Charlotte, N.C. They also strongly suggest Democrats need to convince voters the election should be a choice between Obama and Republican nominee Mitt Romney, rather than a referendum on the president.
Better off/worse off: 31/52 percent. Deserves re-election/doesn't deserve: 40/54 percent. The aforementioned "convincing" process will feature an avalanche of dishonest negativity about Republicans, a reality I discussed on Fox News just after the RNC. (We also touched on my Clint Eastwood scoop):
While the Obama campaign may be content with the audacity of "incomplete," economic reality has a pesky propensity of intruding on Democrats' fun. Perhaps this report will serve to, er, complete the picture of Barack Obama's record over four years:
U.S. manufacturing shrank at its sharpest clip in more than three years in August while U.S. construction spending in July fell by the most in a year, new reports showed on Tuesday. U.S. construction spending in July fell by the most in a year as both the private and public sectors cut back on investment, according to a report that could dampen hopes of a pick-up in economic activity in the third quarter.
To recap, as Obama's nominating convention gets underway, the US national debt has crossed the $16 Trillion threshold, the American manufacturing and construction sectors are contracting, and a disappointing jobs report is on the way. So if a substantial majority of Americans believe Obama's job performance does not merit another term, how is the president virtually tied in the polls? People like him better than Romney on a personal level. It's that simple. We've seen some movement toward Romney on this front following the Tampa convention, but Obama still has a large advantage. This election may boil down to whether voters decide results and policies matter more than personality. If they do, Romney wins. If not, four more years.
Guy Benson is Townhall.com's Political Editor. Follow him on Twitter @guypbenson. He is co-authors with Mary Katharine Ham for their new book End of Discussion: How the Left's Outrage Industry Shuts Down Debate, Manipulates Voters, and Makes America Less Free (and Fun).
Author Photo credit: Jensen Sutta Photography