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Charlie Sykes: Sykes Writes

5 LIABILITIES FOR OBAMA

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 While he's enjoying a temporary bump in the polls, President Obama goes into the campaign with 56 major headwinds, says the Christian Science Monitor....

1. Jobs, jobs, jobs

The single most important statistic affecting Obama’s reelection chances is the unemployment rate. And at 9 percent in April, up from 8.8 percent in March, it’s still well above the historical norm for modern presidents who are reelected.

But where will it be in November 2012? In March, a Wall Street Journal survey of economists predicted unemployment would be down to 7.7 percent by Election Day.

That’s just one-tenth of a percent lower than it was in November 1976, when President Ford lost to Jimmy Carter. And, according to a Los Angeles Times analysis, it’s higher than on two additional occasions when an incumbent president went down to defeat amid high unemployment: in 1980, when President Carter lost to Ronald Reagan with unemployment at 7.5 percent, and in 1992, when a 7.4 percent unemployment rate helped Bill Clinton defeat the first President Bush....

RTWT...

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