Carter Redux

There were folks who didn’t vote for Barack Obama in 2008 because it seemed as if his administration would essentially be like a second Carter term. There are folks like Glenn Reynolds and me who have considered a second Carter term to be a best case scenario.

Tim Stanley writes at The Telegraph that President Obama is facing his Jimmy Carter moment.

In 1980, Democratic president Jimmy Carter faced an uphill struggle for re-election. Yet, despite an index of inflation and unemployment far higher than Obama’s, he was actually doing slightly better in the polls. In March of that year, Carter led his Republican opponent, Ronald Reagan, by around 25 per cent. By May, Gallup gave him a lead of 49 to 41 per cent – higher than Obama’s today. Carter’s advantage evaporated in the months that followed, but he regained ground in October and by the last week he was running even.

None the less, Carter eventually suffered a landslide defeat. The scale of his humiliation was hidden by the fact that people were unwilling to commit themselves to the conservative Ronald Reagan until the very last minute. It was only when they went into the polling booth and weighed up all the hurt and humiliation of the past four years that they cast their vote against the president. It looks like Barack Obama will be the Jimmy Carter of 2012.

Read the whole thing.

UPDATE–Stephen Green has posted a map that shows a possible 39 state/371 vote win for Romney. While that’s not a Reaganesque blowout, it’s better than most pundits and pollsters are guesstimating. But it’s also not out of line with what I sense from talking with folks around the country.

Is it November yet?

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