Early consensus: Osama death a 2012 nonfactor 

RedState’s Erick Erickson: “It is an extraordinary accomplishment — one that defies partisanship. Because Barack Obama is President, like with upturns in the economy, he will get the credit.

But the lack of an upturn in the economy will, by 2012, be more relevant. People have short memories. Voters have short memories. The good will toward Mr. Obama will not last past one or two fill ups.

If the economy does not improve, if gas prices do not go down significantly, and if jobs are not created, Barack Obama will lose. The death of Osama Bin Laden is a good thing. But it has no staying power into 2012.”

The New Republic‘s Jon Chait: “The political ramifications: Minimal to nonexistent. The economy will tell the tale in 2012, and Obama—who had been getting relatively little foreign policy flak from the GOP —was not having a problem establishing his credibility as a foreign policy president on the right. Obama can add this to his list of accomplishments, but it’s hard to see it moving voters.”

The New York Times Nate Silver: “To state the obvious, this is good news for Barack Obama’s re-election campaign. I can’t imagine a single, atomized piece of news, foreign or domestic, that would be better for the President. … But I’m not sure that the magnitude of the bump that Mr. Obama might get in the Gallup tracking poll is going to be especially predictive of how much the residue of this news might produce for him 19 months from now.

In 1991, the top 8 or 10 Democratic candidates skipped the presidential race because George H.W. Bush seemed unbeatable in the wake of the popular Gulf War. But by November 1992, Mr. Bush’s approval ratings were in the 30s, and Bill Clinton defeated him easily — as most any Democratic candidate would have.”

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