On economic issues, Germano-Scandinavian America is not as liberal as many analysts think. Iowans like to boast that their state has the nation’s lowest rate of credit card debt.

In Wisconsin, voters in June decisively rejected the public employee unions’ all-out drive to recall Republican Gov. Scott Walker. And Minnesotans in 2010 gave Republicans big gains in the state legislature and nearly elected as governor an inept Republican over a free-spending and well-known Democrat.

Previous presidents who have been re-elected have widened the electoral map by advancing policies that appealed to electoral blocs that they didn’t carry before.