Thanks to George Washington, Barack Obama cannot seek a third term, but the president confidently proclaimed this week that he believes he could secure another four years in the White House — a boast some analysts quickly cast as wholly unrealistic, perhaps even politically delusional.
With Mr. Obama looking tired as he limps to the end of his second term, sapped of momentum by a growing string of foreign policy challenges abroad and largely paralyzed by political gridlock at home, analysts say another national election victory would be a long shot at best as the broad coalition of voters who reliably supported him in 2008 and 2012 steadily frays.
“It would be very difficult for Barack Obama to win a third term. He lost independents a long time ago. What’s keeping him afloat is essentially the Democratic base. The Democrats would certainly rally around him, and he would have that support, but we shouldn’t forget he lost 5 million votes from 2008 to 2012. I imagine if he ran again he might lose a couple million more,” said Lara Brown, a political science professor at George Washington University. “His record is even more controversial now than it was in 2012.”