The two leading Democrat challengers in Congressional races this cycle face a thorny and difficult dilemma: will they campaign with a President who is most likely going to receive less than 50% of the vote in their respective Congressional districts? With an unpopular incumbent who Governor Hickenlooper says will "have a hard time" winning re-election, these two candidates have to figure out soon how closely tied to Obama they want to be. Based on the results of the latest NBC/WSJ poll, it's probably not in their best interest to be too close.
We wonder how the general consultants attached to Pace and Shaffer's campaigns are reacting to this news this morning from Reuters:
An NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll of 1,000 U.S. adults showed Obama's overall job approval rating at a low of 44 percent, down 3 percentage points since July, while his handling of the economy stands at 37 percent.
A Democratic pollster who helped conduct the survey said the poor results, which contain a 3.1 percentage-point margin of error, suggest Obama is no longer favored to win re-election in 2012.
An ABC News/Washington Post poll of U.S. adults showed that six in 10 Americans rate the president's job on the economy and jobs negatively, while one in three say they are now worse off financially since Obama entered the White House. It has a 3.5 percentage point margin of error.
A third poll of 1,000 likely voters by Washington-based Politico and George Washington University found that 72 percent of voters believe the country is either strongly or somewhat headed in the wrong direction, a jump of 12 percent since last May. That survey's results have a 3.1 percentage point error margin.
What all recent polling and past election performance demonstrates is that Obama is sure to be an electoral albatross. Whether Democrats chose to wear that albatross themselves or let the Republicans lay it on them is the big, unanswered question at this point.
Either way, we'll find out in only three weeks time when Obama comes to raise dollars in Colorado. It will be only his second trip back to the Centennial State since signing the failed stimulus bill here — an ignominious notation sure to be mentioned in every media write up of his trip.
When Obama arrives in Denver, will Sal Pace and Brandon Shaffer be there to greet him?