The Obama campaign has had to deal with a rash of bad news lately. A souring economy combined with a series of gaffes and missteps has made the president look weak and defensive. Poll numbers are down and anxiety is rising in some Democratic quarters.

Fear not, others counsel. The Electoral College will save the day. A number of analyses show that even with public opinion evenly divided between the two major candidates, the Democrats’ advantage in the electoral vote count makes victory in November probable if not inevitable for the current occupant of the White House.