- - Sunday, June 17, 2012

Grade: C

“The past two weeks were D and F. The bleeding has been stopped for now. The president has given a fairly strong (but hardly definitive or game-changing) speech on the economy. Mitt Romney has ridiculed but hardly responded in kind.

“The key demographics are — Romney needs white votes (but there may indeed be fewer white voters if Hispanics, blacks and Asian Americans vote in large numbers, as we expect). President Obama’s big problem is with disillusioned young voters, getting only 46 percent of their vote today; he won with 66 percent in 2008. The key subset among young voters is what I call CENGA — college-educated not going anywhere. They are almost despondent. This recession has gone on too long and they need a start in life. They could hurt Mr. Obama a lot, especially if they do not vote. But do they need tax cuts? Relief on capital gains? An end to losing health insurance because of a pre-existing condition? Neither side stakes its claim on the CENGA and they will be the group I watch closest.

“Meanwhile, huge victory for Mr. Obama on Hispanics and the Dream initiative. Also, regardless of the state of polarization in D.C., Americans still like Mr. Obama and respect the commander in chief, certainly not less when he is giving a speech.

“Note to Neil Munro: I am just a pollster and you are just a reporter. Show some respect. Some of Mr. Obama’s higher grade goes to you.”

Last week’s grade: F

Follow pollster John Zogby on Twitter (@thejohnzogby)