The passion of African-American support for President Obama is falling, posing a major new threat to his prospects for reelection.
According to a new ABC/Washington Post poll, the number of blacks who have “strongly favorable” views of Obama has dropped off a cliff, declining from 83 percent five months ago to 58 percent today.
That blacks will support Obama in the end is unquestionable. Eighty six percent still view him at least somewhat favorably.
But the Obama campaign desperately needs to bring core constituencies like African Americans to the polls in high numbers, and flagging enthusiasm will make the task more difficult and expensive.
What’s more, key swing states like Ohio, Florida, North Carolina and many others have large black populations.
Black leaders have been increasingly critical of President Obama for failing to stem the high and rising black unemployment rate. And Obama’s failure to weigh in on or try to prevent the execution yesterday of Troy Davis in Georgia – a black man whom some believe was may have been innocent and a victim of racism in the justice system – may hurt him as well.