President Obama’s Friday news conference did little to advance U.S. policy on Libya or clarify the White House’s position on resolving the budget impasse in Congress. The president nonetheless conveyed one unmistakable impression: He is now focused intently on winning back independent voters.
After brief comments on the earthquake and tsunami in Japan, the news conference was dominated by three topics: Libya, the budget and rising gasoline prices. Obama’s handling of each reinforced the perception that independent voters, who helped elect him and then defected to Republicans in 2010, are again clearly on his radar screen.
Trust us when we tell you that if Obama is to win in 2012 (which we hope he doesn’t), his reelection campaign will be keen on targeting independent voters in the 2012 battleground states of Florida, Ohio, Virginia, Nevada, New Mexico and North Carolina. He will be relying heavily on union voters and independents to carry his water in the battleground states of Wisconsin, Michigan and Minnesotta.