One of the enduring mysteries of the Obama presidency is why he keeps leaning far left when independent voters make it clear they want a centrist in the White House. It is not an academic point -- independents swung the 2008 election his way, and without them, Obama probably canít win a second term.

Well, consider the mystery solved. The reason Obama keeps tilting left is that so many independents have dumped him and he has almost no chance of getting them back. So energizing libs for a massive turnout is his next-best hope......The bad news for the president is pronounced in a Bloomberg news poll. Only 29 percent of independents approve of his performance on the economy, while 66 percent disapprove.

On reducing deficits, a prime issue for independents, 25 percent like what heís doing, while 67 percent donít. Only 30 percent support his job-creation ideas and 34 percent his health-care plans.