Very bad Nevada economy threatens Obama

October 19, 2011 - 9:02 AM
Obama King

President Barack Obama and first lady Michelle Obama participate in the dedication ceremony of the Martin Luther King Jr. Memorial Sunday, Oct. 16, 2011, on the National Mall in Washington. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

HENDERSON, Nev. (AP) — Look no further than Nevada to understand why President Barack Obama may not win re-election next fall.

The western swing state has the highest unemployment rate in the nation at 13.4 percent. Nevada also has the highest foreclosure rate and record bankruptcies.

Voters are angry over the lack of jobs and Republicans are seizing on that to try to prevent another Obama victory here.

The uncertainty helps explain why Nevada is abuzz in national political activity this week.

The GOP presidential candidates will debate Tuesday in Las Vegas and Republicans and Democrats are hosting competing conferences here to plan their 2012 strategies.

To win, both sides must woo Nevada's many independent voters in Reno, government-centric Carson City and southeastern Henderson, where voters tend to be conservative and white.