From Public Policy Polling:
Pennsylvania is looking more and more like it could be a tough hold for Barack Obama in 2012. His approval rating in the state continues to be under water at 46/48. More voters have expressed disapproval than happiness with Obama on all three polls PPP has done in the state so far in 2011. And even though Obama took Pennsylvania by 10 points in 2008 the best he can muster right now in a head to head match up with Mitt Romney is a tie…
It is best to still rate Pennsylvania as “Lean Democrat” for the 2012 campaign – it has been a reliably blue State in Presidential politics since 1992, so we have to assume that Obama will pull it out. This is especially true given that Democrats absolutely control the Philadelphia area and are always willing to manufacture enough votes there to counter-balance the GOP elsewhere in the State. On the other hand, the GOP controls the Pennsylvania governorship and legislature, and that will put a damper on Democrat ability to cheat…might get caught, you know?
One thing is certain, though, is that if Obama can’t win Pennsylvania then he can’t be re-elected President of the United States. The GOP doesn’t need the State (we can get together 285 electoral votes just by winning the same States as Bush did in 2000 thanks to population growth in the red States…heck, we can even let Obama have New Hampshire and Colorado of the Bush 2000 States and still have 272), but Obama does…and if he loses it, it means that he is likely also losing New Hampshire, Michigan and Wisconsin; in other words, for Obama to lose Pennsylvania means that he’s heading for a landslide loss.
And that is what this poll shows – Obama losing Pennsylvania. But, don’t anyone get too excited about this. Obama will spend a billion dollars and will leave no stone unturned to win in 2012. It will be the hardest fought campaign in history and we can lose it, easily, if we screw up – especially if we screw up by thinking we’ve got it in the bag. Fight, fight and then fight some more – that is what we have to do in 2012.