Despite historically low approval ratings and an economy that shows no signs of recovering anytime soon, President Obama is feeling confident about his prospects in 2012. In an interview on CBS’s 60 Minutes, Obama acknowledged the steep road ahead but predicted that the when voters contrast his policies with his Republican opponents’ they’ll trust his vision.
"I don't spend a lot of time worrying about the criticisms day to day," the president said. "What I do spend time worrying about is making sure that we're getting the policies right that will help people succeed, and give Americans the tools they have to navigate a new economy that is global, that is skills-based, that is knowledge-based. And we're doing that."
According to the findings of a CBS News poll released Dec. 9, only 41 percent of Americans said they believe Obama deserves a second term and 75 percent said that the country is headed in the wrong direction. Just 37 percent said they believe the president’s policies have prevented a greater recession.
"I'm being judged against the ideal,” he said. “Joe Biden has a good expression, he says, 'Don't judge me against the Almighty, judge me against the alternative.'"
But, he argued he didn’t overpromise or underestimate how tough it would be to turn the economy around.
“I didn't overpromise and I didn't underestimate how tough this was going to be. I always believed that this was a long-term project. This wasn't a short-term project. And, you know, for individual Americans who are struggling right now, they have every reason to be impatient,” he said. “Reversing structural problems in our economy that have been building up for two decades, that's going to take time.”
Obama also said he’s not particularly concerned about who his ultimate challenger will be in 2012 because all of the Republican candidates are essentially the same person, espousing the same views that are decidedly different from his. And that’s what he believes will enable him to win a second term.
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(Photo: Courtesy CBS)