Obama Vulnerable to Romney in Iowa, Other Swing States

President Obama is going to have to fight to turn out the same voters he won in Iowa in 2008.

President Barack Obama speaks before he awards the Medal of Freedom during a ceremony in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, May 29, 2012. The Medal of Freedom is the nation's highest civilian honor. It's presented to individuals who have made especially meritorious contributions to the national interests of the United States, to world peace or to other significant endeavors.

The left's political analysis is in many ways the same as its economic analysis: static.

The left does not allow for the dynamism of the race to change the potential outcome. They are generally likely to award to President Barack Obama now many of the same states he won in 2008, whether or not they had a history of voting Republican at the presidential level. It's a kind of political "Brezhnev Doctrine," meaning they keep what they have and only they are allowed to get more.

In point of fact, the race is very much in flux. The tightness in the national polls suggests the country is ready for a change and only needs an indication that the alternative might be better than what we have now in order to make that change come about.

[See a collection of political cartoons on the 2012 campaign.]

If the Mitt Romney/ Paul Ryan campaign is successful in driving home its central point—that the only way to change the economic picture is to change presidents—then states like Michigan and Pennsylvania which most of the forecasters are now conceding to the president will most likely flip. Many of these states are already closer than they should be, that is if the left's narrative that Obama's re-election is an easy lay-up is correct.

Take Iowa, where both Obama and presumptive GOP vice presidential nominee Paul Ryan are campaigning Monday. Four years ago Obama carried the Hawkeye State, 54 to 44 percent. Now he leads Romney by just one point, according to the Real Clear Politics average of the four most recent presidential statewide polls. Part of the reason for this, one national group said, is that Obama is failing to excite young people like he did last time around.

"With a margin this close, even small gains among young voters can have a huge payoff on election day," said Kristen Soltis, communications adviser to Crossroads Generation. "Nationally, polls have shown Obama doing significantly less well with young people than he did four years ago, and with 17 percent of Iowa voters under the age of 30, that's a major block to swing."

[See a collection of political cartoons on the economy.]

If Iowa is in play, and the polling data suggests that it is, then other states like Michigan, Pennsylvania, and Wisconsin and must be considered to be in play as well. And Obama cannot afford to lose a single one of them.

Young Iowans in 2010 broke for Republican candidates in the gubernatorial and U.S. Senate contests, choosing Republican Gov. Terry Branstad by a 50-46 margin and re-electing Republican Sen. Chuck Grassley by a 64-35 margin according to media exit polls, Crossroads Generation said.

The Obama coalition may be crumbling because of the lousy economy. They are now blaming the president, no matter how much he still likes to talk about things being George W. Bush's fault. People are hungry for change. The president's team ignores this simple fact at its own peril.

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