So, it seems pretty obvious to me that with all the good economic news—that is the stats that show that the economy is doing much much better than it was when Obama took over the heading-for-another-Great-Depression economy Bush/Cheney created—Republicans and especially the right need other issues to beat Obama.
Chris Christie vetoing the New Jersey legislature's bill making gay marriage legal and wanting it on the ballot in November is a replay of the social issues strategy that got us Bush/Cheney in the first and second place. The idea is those on the right less than enthusiastic about whatever Republican candidate runs will come out anyway because they want to stop gays from having legally stable married lives as the right's way of "defending" marriage (it isn't merely ironic, it's iconic rightwing doublethink).
But the issue all over the media that no one seems to be connecting to the right's election strategy is oil prices. As I pointed out here before, Obama has managed to reduce the USA's dependence on foreign oil much lower than what existed under Bush/Cheney and on top of that demand for oil in the USA is way down. So why the rise in prices?
The media claims, because the rightwing think tanks claim, that it's the rising demand from China and India and other so-called emerging markets. But I think it's pretty obvious that the oil corporations have always been handmaidens of the right's political leaders (or vice versa I guess). It was oil money that got Bush and Cheney elected and kept them in power to a large extent and that led to a lot of the catastrophes they engendered, like the Iraq War.
There is little doubt in my mind that if the economy is improving so much that even the constant repetition of the right's big lie that Obama has ruined the economy when it has been and is the exact opposite doesn't work, and social issues prove not as helpful to the right as they did a decade ago, then they will use their connections to big oil to eliminate much of the economic benefits of the recovery, by causing most folks to have to spend the extra money that comes with an improving economy on gas and end up feeling like things aren't as good as they actually are.
They've done it before.