Obama no longer an asset for Democrats

Politico:

As buoyant Republicans devise their game plan for the 2010 campaign, party officials are counting on a boost from an unlikely source – President Obama.

A tactic that would have seemed far-fetched a year ago, when the new president was sworn in with a 67 percent job approval rating, is now emerging as a key component of the GOP strategy: Tie Democratic opponents to Obama and make them answer for some of the unpopular policies associated with the chief executive.

GOP strategists gathered here for the Republican National Committee’s winter meeting believe that now that he's fallen below 50 percent in the venerable Gallup poll, Obama will be an asset to GOP candidates, particularly in conservative or swing states.

The challenge will be to link Democrats with the administration on such issues as spending, bailouts, healthcare and cap-and-trade while not personally attacking Obama, who remains personally well-liked even as his standing erodes. So, at least in purple states or districts, don’t expect to see an ad where the faces of Democratic candidates are morphed into that of the president—a time-honored approach from past campaigns.

But Republicans are unmistakably enthusiastic – and downright giddy in some cases – about the prospect of Democrats stumping with the president in their states, a vivid reminder about how starkly different the political landscape seems now than when Obama took office.

It’s in conservative states, of course, where they’re especially pining for a presidential visit.

“We encourage him to come,” said Louisiana GOP Chairman Roger Villere. “We encourage him to come early and often!”

There is more.

This is more evidence of the change Obama was not look for. The health care and cap and trade votes are going to be a negative for most Democrats, particularly in conservative states. Republicans will be aggregating the Democrats votes with Obama to use against them.

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