Voters Not Tracking with Obama's Economy Claims

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Twenty years ago, Democratic strategist James Carville spurred on Bill Clinton's presidential campaign with one of the most famous slogans in politics: "It's the economy, stupid."

Today, Carville is warning President Barack Obama that his economic message is not getting through to voters.

An ABC News/Washington Post survey found that 54 percent of swing voters disapprove of the president's economic policies. Independents oppose Mitt Romney's economic stance by 47.

On the campaign trail, the president remains bullish on the economy.

"We are in a stronger position, we are moving in a better direction than when I took office," Obama recently said.

That message worries Democrats like Carville who says voters have major concerns.

"I'm worried that when the White House and the campaign talks about the progress that's being made, people take that as a signal that they think that things are fine, and people don't think that or believe that," Carville explained.

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney seized on that theme, campaigning in the swing state of Florida.

"People across America are having a hard time. The president doesn't understand how his policies have made things so hard for the American people," Romney claimed.

"It's finally time to have a president who's in touch with what's happening in America and I am," he continued. "I'll bring back America's strength."

In a speech Tuesday night, the president acknowledged that times aren't so great for everyone.

"Does that mean I, we, are satisfied? Absolutely not," he said.

Then, he returned to blaming the administration before him.

"They ran up the tab and are trying to pass the bill to me," Obama said.

But Romney wasn't part of the Bush administration. Carville says team Obama needs to spend more time addressing the voters' concerns.

"They want to be reassured he understands the depth of the problem and that he has a plan," Carville said. "To deal with the deterioration of the middle class in this country, and that's what people want to hear."

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John Waage

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John Waage has covered politics and analyzed elections for CBN News since 1980, including primaries, conventions, and general elections. 

He also analyzes the convulsive politics of the Middle East.