Here's my thinking:
Imagine 20 people who voted for McCain last time. How many of them are thinking, Gee, Obama's done such a good job that he deserves to be reelected. I didn't vote for him last time, but he's really won me over?
Now imagine 20 people who voted for Obama last time. How many of them are thinking, Boy did I get suckered. This guy just wasn't ready. Bush may have got us in trouble, but this guy promised to make things better and now they're worse?
My take is that not very many McCain voters have been impressed with Obama's first term, and that quite a number of Obama voters are disappointed with his performance. I'm not sure how many of them are disillusioned enough to switch sides this time, but I'm thinking it's more than will go the other way by a "handy" amount.
Most polls say differently, predicting a close race with Obama slightly ahead, so maybe I'm all wet. But a lot of polling companies are including a lot more Democrats than Republicans in their surveys, and that makes things look a lot better for Obama than they are. Also, I think some who have decided on Romney or are on the fence are saying they will vote for Obama because they fear being labeled a racist.
Anyway, I saw a Gallop poll today that seems to support my thinking:
Eighty-six percent of voters who say they voted for Barack Obama in 2008 are backing Obama again this year, a smaller proportion than the 92% of 2008 John McCain voters who are supporting 2012 Republican candidate Mitt Romney. Nine percent of 2008 Obama voters have switched to supporting Romney this year, while 5% of McCain voters have switched to Obama.As I said, I'm not especially good at prognosticating these types of things, but I thought it would be fun to stick my neck out. Maybe I'll get it right this time.
I hope I am, because I'm definitely in the camp that considers Obama a disaster. Unfortunately, I'm not a big fan of Romney either, so while I think Romney is a much better choice than Obama, I'm afraid we lose either way. It's the difference between shooting yourself in the foot and stabbing yourself in the heart. I'll vote for the bullet in the foot, but I'm not happy about.