Just a few weeks ago, Barack Obama’s re-election bid was beginning to look like an easy downhill jog. The daring raid that the President ordered delivered Osama bin Laden to the bottom of the Indian Ocean. Economic prospects looked brighter. Perhaps most helpfully, the Republican Party seemed to be indulging some kind of collective death-wish, putting Donald Trump first in the polls and Representative Paul Ryan’s budget cutting at the top of its legislative agenda.
Mr Obama’s spring peak came at the White House Correspondent’s Dinner in late April, when he jovially deflated Mr Trump, while the Navy Seals were en route to Abbottabad. But since then, the political weather has turned less favourable. Unemployment rose to a treacherous 9.1 per cent, while the Dow fell nearly 1000 points from its peak. Most alarmingly, the Republican Party appears gradually to be going sane. Read more