By Tom Foreman, CNN
updated 8:49 PM EST, Tue December 13, 2011
Washington (CNN) -- All politicians disappoint their supporters. It is a relentless truth in D.C.
They make pledges they can't keep, say things they don't mean, and encounter stiff headwinds in office that were just distant breezes on the campaign trail. The bigger their failed promises, the bigger the disappointment.
And just a few hours north of Washington, in the battleground state of Pennsylvania, it is easy to see that President Obama has a lot of disappointment standing between him and re-election.
"I believed in him 100%," says Andy Heller in Scranton. "I thought it was going to be a big turnaround from President Bush. But now you have to wonder."
Heller, 56, is a registered Democrat who runs Steamtown Blueprint and Copy Center, a small construction-related firm. In 2008, he placed yard signs for Obama, attended fundraisers and eagerly awaited a first term that he thought would bring more cooperation, more innovation, or at least a better economy. Since then, business has grown worse, the atmosphere in Washington has become more toxic and his faith in Barack Obama has steadily dwindled. "I'm not sure it was entirely his fault, but he made promises he couldn't keep."
Across town, Mark Dennebaum Jr., 31, is one of those young voters who created the wave Obama rode into office. At his place, 25/8 Productions, a video production shop, business is good, but the feeling among his friends about Obama is much the same as it is elsewhere. "When he spoke it was truly inspiring. I loved him in 2008, and right now if this were in a relationship, I'd be talking to a divorce attorney. When you mention Obama, there is a giant, collective sigh."
The depth of the turnaround is massive. Three years ago this month, 77% of voters polled told CNN they believed Obama would unite the country, 68% said they were either "thrilled" or "happy" he'd been elected, 79% thought he'd do a good job and 74% were confident he would improve the economy.
Today his approval rating wallows in the mid 40% range; disapproval is over 50%. And a dismal 35% of the voters like the way he is handling the economy.
This gets you to the indents: http://www.cnn.com/2011/12/13/politi...?iref=obinsite
"...the atmosphere in Washington has become more toxic..."
That's right folks, Obama THE DIVIDER.