President Obama has lost Time Magazine.
A brutally honest and generally accurate picture of Obama's troubles at this point in his presidency comes to us via Mark Halperin:
With the exception of core Obama Administration loyalists, most politically engaged elites have reached the same conclusions: the White House is in over its head, isolated, insular, arrogant and clueless about how to get along with or persuade members of Congress, the media, the business community or working-class voters. This view is held by Fox News pundits, executives and anchors at the major old-media outlets, reporters who cover the White House, Democratic and Republican congressional leaders and governors, many Democratic business people and lawyers who raised big money for Obama in 2008, and even some members of the Administration just beyond the inner circle. (See Obama's troubled first year, issue by issue.)
On Friday, after the release of the latest bleak unemployment data - the last major jobs figures before the midterms - Obama said, "Putting the American people back to work, expanding opportunity, rebuilding the economic security of the middle class is the moral and national challenge of our time." But elites feel the President has failed to meet that challenge and are convinced he will be unable to do so in the remainder of his term. Moreover, there is a growing perception that Obama's decisions are causing harm - that businesses are being hurt by the Administration's legislation and that economic recovery is stalling because of the uncertainty surrounding energy policy, health care, deficits, housing, immigration and spending.
It gets worse. Halperin refers to Jobs Fairs across the country as "the breadlines for the Obama years." And after criticizing the GOP for not offering alternatives, Halperin skewers Obama for wasting time trying to demonize the opposition.
I may be wrong but this might be the first time that outright charges of incompetence by Obama have figured so prominently in an article in the old media. If so, the narrative about Obama's brilliance may be changing - a possibility that could not only doom Obama's re-election chances but might precipitate a primary challenge next year.