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Obama agenda: Retreat


President Obama before a speech in Washington today. According to a new Quinnipiac poll, the president's approval rating has slipped to 42%.

The Washington Post writes on the latest from Libya: "The rebels’ chaotic retreat from the town of Bin Jawwad, which they had captured from troops loyal to Gaddafi just two days earlier, reversed the momentum they had seized over the weekend and suggested that the ad hoc and lightly armed opposition force may have reached the limits of its capacity."

Tom Friedman says he hopes Obama is lucky. "I hope Qaddafi’s regime collapses like a sand castle, that the Libyan opposition turns out to be decent and united and that they require just a bare minimum of international help to get on their feet. Then U.S. prestige will be enhanced and this humanitarian mission will have both saved lives and helped to lock another Arab state into the democratic camp. Dear Lord, please make President Obama lucky."

Obama’s approval is at an all-time low in a new Quinnipiac poll -- just 42% approve; 48% disapprove. And by a 50%-41% margin, those surveyed say he does not deserve reelection. That’s a switch in less than a month from a 46%-46% job approval and 45%-47% split on his reelection. (He’s upside down with independents 39%-51%.) On Libya, by a 47%-41% margin, voters oppose U.S. involvement, and by a 58%-29% margin respondents say the president hasn’t stated the goals clearly.

The New York Daily News on Obama’s fundraiser in New York: “The cash bash raked in a cool $1.5 million for the Democratic National Committee. As hundreds of New Yorkers jammed the streets outside hoping to get a peek at the Prez, Obama rubbed elbows with movers and shakers inside the hot spot. He received a standing ovation as he emerged from the kitchen after being ushered in through a back alley.”

More on Obama’s New York trip from the Daily News here.

“President Obama will not throw out the ceremonial first pitch at the Washington Nationals's opening day game on Thursday,” The Hill writes. “The 44th president participated in the long-standing tradition last year, when he stepped on the mound at Nationals Park donning a Nats jacket and the cap of his favorite team, the Chicago White Sox.” And it wasn’t pretty.

The question has been raised: Where was Biden on Libya? The New York Post: “While President Obama was putting the finishing touches on his Libya conflict speech, and Moammar Khaddafy was plotting his next attack on his people, an apparently stressed-out Joe Biden took a minibreak to a ritzy Aspen-area ski resort. The vice president spent four nights at Snowmass Village in Colorado, arriving in the snow-covered town late Thursday night and leaving Monday -- while members of Congress wrangled over the federal budget. ‘It's a pretty low-key visit, definitely a vacation,’ Pitkin County Sheriff Joe DiSalvo, whose office helped provide security for the visiting veep, told the Aspen Times.”