It's actually kind of funny to watch a liberal journalist, hit in the face with all the relevent data,  drawing anything but the painfully obvious conclusion.

Take Michael Tomasky of Newsweek/The Daily Beast, who chalks up President Obama's trouble in recent opinion polls to his spin doctor team in the White House (emphasis mine):

Newsweek's Michael Tomasky counts himself as one of many "impressed liberal[s]" who are heartened by Jon Huntsman's attacks on Rick Perry.

Writing yesterday on the Daily Beast website, Tomasky suggested the former Utah governor was "a narrow thread of hope about the future" of the GOP dominated by both leaders and rank-and-file primary voters who are far from "reasonable."

As such, Huntsman's tactic of violating Ronald Reagan's 11th Commandment was harmful in the short term but a perfect plan for a long-term resurgence, Tomasky insisted (emphasis mine):

To Michael Tomasky, Barack Obama's problem is not lack of leadership or a rigid fixation to liberal ideology.

No, it's just that the president is too darn decent a guy, a veritable Mr. Smith who's gone to Washington, but perhaps in this case without the Capraesque happy ending: