Obama Makes His 2012 Bid Official

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Obama makes his 2012 bid officialTo no one's surprise, President Barack Obama has announced that he will run for re-election in 2012.

The commander-in-chief revealed his intentions on April 4 via a short video on his website. He also sent out an email message to supporters, saying that it is time "to begin mobilizing for 2012."

Obama's re-election bid was announced earlier than is typical for an incumbent, according to media reports. Considering that the 2012 race is expected to attract a host of Republican challengers, the President's team wanted to make his candidacy official and start fundraising as soon as possible.

FOX News reports that Obama will raise up to $1 billion in campaign funds, which would shatter previous records. In 2008, he accrued approximately $750 million on his way to victory over GOP challenger John McCain (R-Ariz.).

The President's Gallup Poll approval rating is currently 45 percent, according to MSNBC. It is the lowest approval rating of an incumbent at this point in a Presidency since Ronald Reagan, who had a 42 percent rating in April 1983. However, Reagan recovered and earned a second term in the 1984 election.

In contrast, George H.W. Bush had a 79 percent approval rating in April 1991, but he was defeated by Democrat Bill Clinton the following year. 

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