I blogged recently about "Why Obama is Still the Favorite in 2012", an article written by Michael Medved, author of "The 5 Big Lies About American Business" and host of a syndicated talk radio show. George Bernard Shaw correctly summed up part of the "why" when he said "A government that robs Peter to pay Paul can always depend on the support of Paul."
The other major reason is that Hispanics (and most other ethnic minority voters), who have higher birth rates, hold the balance of power--and Republicans aren't, so far, winning their support in large enough numbers. Obama may be successful in passing laws changing laws to convert illegals, who also have a higher birth rate, into American citizens before November, 2012. Many have forgotten that Obama enjoys huge popularity among people of color; huge support among blacks and a 2to 1 edge with the Latinos. However, polls indicate that 35% of Latinos do not as yet have a preference in the 2010 election. Progress by Republicans in persuading Obama supporters to become "I voted for him once, but never again" people and Tea Party people will have a huge impact on the 2012 election.
And then there is the "Paul" factor. The more people who "owe their living to the government man", the more votes Obama and the Democrat incumbents will collect.
Payback time. Unions bosses, probably without exception, will urge their members to not support ANY Republican. Especially in the growing, job secure, federal, state and local bureaucracies.
A factor in the Republicans favor will be the effectiveness of the Tea Party in getting out the vote to oust the embedded (in more ways that one) semi-corrupt or corrupt incumbents.
So much depends on the Republicans breaking from the the "good old boys and girls club" established patterns, and standing "real" people for office. To date, I do not believe Palin, Jindahl, Gingrich, Huckabee, Romney or any of the most commonly mentioned big name can win in 2012. Not that all of them would be an improvement over the incumbent. They would. So much depends on the elections of 2010 and the performance of the new politicians elected in the period between 2010-2012.
And of course, Obama's actions and the economy which includes, of course, the job market.