Mr. Law says their votes this fall will be driven in part by the summer of 2011. "The debt-limit fight of last July was much more of an important catalytic moment in the progress of the Obama presidency than most people focus on. In our own polling and focus-group research, that was the inflection point at which people began to seriously doubt whether President Obama had the skills necessary to solve the most important problems." Swing voters viewed the Beltway stalemate, which culminated in a downgrade of the U.S. credit rating, as "a sour, lousy process," one that Mr. Obama "was an unhelpful part of."
...In Wisconsin, Crossroads GPS is going after Tammy Baldwin on the debt issue:
Mr. Law concludes that welfare reform could be a "powerful issue to talk about this fall, but it needs to be done sensitively. Right now it may be more of an economic issue than a values issue: In other words, more people on welfare is another disturbing symptom of Obama's broken-down economy, rather than an indictment of those who are on welfare or the culture as a whole."
Among the other campaign issues, "the mother lode is economic insecurity." That will be the focus of Crossroads advertising. New GOP vice-presidential candidate Paul Ryan, with his history of promoting pro-growth tax reform, can help "add texture to a robust economic argument." The Ryan pick also symbolizes "a newfound aggressiveness with the Romney campaign, and that's very welcome."