PALM BEACH, Fla. – As the president’s campaign acknowledges it’s in trouble of losing the November election, radio giant Rush Limbaugh has dubbed Barack Obama “the chief lunatic” in Washington.

The Obama campaign is now using unflattering polling data in a plea for more donations.

Campaign manager Jim Messina sent out an e-mail last night saying, “According to the latest Washington Post-ABC News poll, if the general election were held today, we would lose to Mitt Romney. Let me say that again: According to this poll, if the general election were today, we would lose.”

“If the idea of a President Romney scares you, it’s time to own a piece of this campaign – donate $3 or more today,” he added.

Another poll by the New York Times and CBS has similar results showing Obama’s approval rating dropping “substantially in recent weeks” down to 41 percent, and that has political analysts taking notice.

“Obama is in trouble, and there’s no pretending he isn’t,” writes John Podhoretz at Commentary Magazine.

But Podhoretz says Obama’s strategy to run against Washington lawmakers may backfire.

“This may be the worst possible time for such an effort,” he writes. “Time and again during the past year, Obama has decided to go to the American people with this story to tell: I can’t work with these lunatics. And every time he does – during and after the debt-ceiling debacle in particular – he and his supporters are surprised to find the public assigns him a considerable portion of the blame for the inability to strike deals and move forward.”

The analysis caught the attention of radio host Rush Limbaugh this afternoon, who said of Obama, “He’s the chief lunatic! He’s the reason for most of the problems this country has encountered the last three years. Not George W. Bush. Not any predecessor.

“Barack Obama has a record. He’s trying to run from that record and pretend that he hasn’t been president for three years. If you listen to his campaign, you’ll note that. You’ll scratch your head and say, ‘This guy sounds like he hasn’t even been in town for three years.'”

Limbaugh continued: “Now Obama’s wondering: ‘Look, I’m out there telling everybody I can’t work with these lunatics in Congress – Boehner’s a nut, they’re all nuts – so what do you mean they think I’m part of the problem?’

“Uh, you’re president, Mr. Obama, and you are the definition of ‘Washington.'”

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