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How Republicans might sink Obama

In 1976, they nearly beat Carter with the fear card.

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A fresh-faced Democratic presidential candidate promising change. An economy in turmoil. A nation soured on Republican rule.

It sounds like a recipe for a big win for Sen. Barack Obama this November. It also sounds a lot like the 1976 campaign, which I covered as White House correspondent for the Associated Press. And if history is any guide, don't count the GOP out just yet.

In August 1976, after winning the Republican nomination in Kansas City, Mo., Gerald Ford invited GOP VIPs to his summer retreat in Vail, Colo., to plot strategy for the November election against Jimmy Carter, who at that time enjoyed a nearly insurmountable advantage in opinion polls. Indeed, as summer peaked, Mr. Carter was doubling Ford's support in surveys – capturing nearly 70 percent.

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