"Once a president suffers a blow such as Obama is now suffering with his health-care law, it is difficult to recover," wrote the Washington Post's Dana Milbank, adding that it was "starting to look as if it may be game over."
Yet one month removed from that prognostication, there are signs Obama could be about to turn his presidency around.
On an important front, Obama has already regained the public trust. According to the last Post/ABC survey, majorities once again think Obama is honest and that he understands the problems of regular people. And though Obama's approval rating is still horrendous, it appears to have at least plateaued.
Focusing solely on the raw polling numbers though, sans context, Obama's presidency does stack up unfavorably to that of past presidents. As Business Insider noted, Obama's approval rating is the lowest for a president at this point in his tenure since Richard Nixon and his Watergate-fueled 29 percent.
But that's a horribly misleading comparison.
Of the six presidents in between Nixon and Obama, three never served a second term and so don't fit into the comparison. And though George W. Bush had a marginally better approval rating in the Post's final 2005 poll, his numbers overall were right in line with where Obama's are now. (Obama has a marginal edge at present per Gallup, for instance.)
So, to rephrase the Nixon comparison with those qualifiers in mind: Obama's approval rating is tied or better than that of all but two of the past five two-term presidents through this point in their presidencies. Not so dire (and clicky) now, is it?