“I’d rather be a really good one-term president than a mediocre two-term president,” the newly elected president told ABC’s Diane Sawyer in January of 2009.
More than two and a half years later, that sentence seems newly relevant as President Obama revs up for a reelection fight facing a dismal economy and sagging approval ratings.
And it seems Obama believes a second term could be in reach.
He told a supporters at a Washington, D.C. fundraiser Thursday night that he thinks his reelection is far more likely than his election was at this point in 2007.
“Over the last couple of months there have been Democrats who voiced concerns and nervousness about, well, in this kind of economy, isn’t this just — aren’t these just huge headwinds in terms of your reelection?” Obama said.
“And I just have to remind people that, here’s one thing I know for certain: the odds of me being reelected are much higher than the odds of me being elected in the first place.”
ABC News Political Director Amy Walter notes that it is certainly true that Obama is more popular among Democrats now than was the last one-term Democratic president, Jimmy Carter, at this point in his presidency.
And Obama’s top campaign adviser, David Axelrod , argues that the president’s approval and the public’s perception of him will change once there is a Republican nominee with whom to draw specific contrasts.