The current state of play in Iowa may be something of a mixed bag for many of you. There’s good news, not so good news and, frankly… kind of weird news. Barack Obama carried Iowa by nearly 10% in 2008. So it should provide a cheerful note for the GOP hopefuls to learn that three of the remaining four top tier contenders lead the President in head to head match-ups in the latest polling there. But who does the best?

President Barack Obama trails three of the four Republican candidates in head-to-head match-ups if the election were held today, according to a new Iowa Poll.

The Republican with the biggest lead: Ron Paul, who would defeat Obama by 7 percentage points, 49 percent to 42 percent. Rick Santorum, winner of the 2012 Iowa caucuses, leads Obama 48 percent to 44 percent. Mitt Romney, edged in the caucuses by Santorum, leads Obama 46 percent to 44 percent.

The president defeats only Newt Gingrich, 51 percent to 37 percent.
Iowa is considered a swing state in the general election, critical to Obama’s re-election or victory by the Republican nominee.

So apparently Iowa has caught the fevah, and the only cure is… Ron Paul.

This comes as something of a surprise, considering recent news items providing more positive news for the President. Fox has already reported that Obama has been ticking upward in the swing states, and there’s been a relentless media narrative about how happy days are here again, good times are just around the corner and – very likely – that oceans levels have indeed begun to fall. Is Iowa some sort of harbinger of things to come, even before the expected change in unemployment trends?

Clearly, Ron Paul is overperforming with independents and disheartened Democrats, while lagging badly with the base. Either way, though, it still appears that Obama is facing an uphill battle here unless Newt somehow makes a third comeback.