What should startle the Obama campaign is that Americans view the president as ideologically furthest away from themselves.
Americans perceive Jon Huntsman, Mitt Romney, and Ron Paul as closest to themselves ideologically, and Michele Bachmann and Barack Obama as furthest away.
A USA Today/Gallup poll asked Americans to rate their own ideology -- and the ideology of the eight major presidential candidates -- on a 5-point scale with 1 being very liberal and 5 being very conservative. Americans' mean score on this scale is 3.3, meaning the average American is slightly to the right of center ideologically. Huntsman's score matches that at 3.3, but that mean rating excludes the 45% of Americans who did not have an opinion of Huntsman. Of the better known candidates, Romney's and Paul's 3.5 scores are closest to the average American's ideology.
Liberals have a problem. How to run a national campaign when the electorate is conservative? The simple answer - as Obama and many liberals have done - is lie about your intentions. Coat your radical agenda in soothing words like "hope" and "change." Mention children often. Paint the other side as extreme to deflect attention from your own radicalism. And most importantly, use the race, sex, and sexual orientation cards as often as possible. Americans hate being associated with perceived intolerance and calling the other side bigots or worse has a decided effect on their support.
Obama has obviously been exposed as a radical liberal. Will it be enough for the voters to reject him in 2012? At this point, the answer is yes.