Oct. 28, 2010 -- President Obama's appearance last night on "The Daily Show" with Jon Stewart seemed to fit right in with the release of new poll numbers from The New York Times and CBS News that, together, speak volumes about how much trouble the Democrats are in this year. As Stewart grilled the president, saying that his legislative agenda felt "timid" compared to the "audacity" he ran on in 2008, the fresh polling indicated just how severely the coalition that helped Obama win the White House two years ago has splintered. "You ran on very high rhetoric, hope and change and the Democrats this year seem to be running on 'please baby one more chance,'" Stewart joked. "So you wouldn't say you would run next time as a pragmatist? You would not, it wouldn't be 'yes we can, given certain conditions.'" Obama responded "No I think what I would say is 'yes we can' but it's not going to happen overnight."
Meanwhile, The Times/CBS News poll carried grim news for the Democrats: "Republicans have wiped out the advantage held by Democrats in recent election cycles among women, Roman Catholics, less affluent Americans and independents. All of those groups broke for Mr. Obama in 2008 and for Congressional Democrats when they grabbed both chambers from the Republicans four years ago, according to exit polls. … The poll provides a pre-Election Day glimpse of a nation so politically disquieted and disappointed in its current trajectory that 57 percent of the registered voters surveyed said they were more willing to take a chance this year on a candidate with little previous political experience. More than a quarter of them said they were even willing to back a candidate who holds some views that 'seem extreme.'"
The president acknowledged those political realities last night. "Folks are going to be frustrated and it's going to reflect itself in the political environment," he said. "The fact is that there are a bunch of folks who, during the course of this year, took really tough votes that they knew were bad politics because they thought they were the right things to do."
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