There’s one big fact about the Obama presidency: the US economy has sucked all through it. Who you blame for that is the key to the American political debate. But the reality of the suck is the baseline. The President’s approval on the economy has trended down over the course of the last three years.
Then in early 2011 it veered into really bad territory and peaked around the time of the debt limit debacle. From the summer into the late Fall the president’s approval on this critical metric dipped deep into the 30s and his disapproval numbers were consistently at or above 60%. That’s extremely dangerous territory for a sitting president.
But starting about three months ago those numbers started to improve substantially. The Romney campaign knows that if those numbers get back near even or actually go into positive territory, Romney’s probably sunk in the general.
Josh Marshall is editor and publisher of TalkingPointsMemo.com.