Frustration and anxiety breed in a bad economy and one of President Obama's closest advisors realizes a lot it is directed at her boss.

"I think people are disappointed that our country is not further along. If the economy was doing great right now I don't think you would hear that disappointment in him," Senior Obama Advisor Valerie Jarrett said at an "Ideas Forum" in Washington Wednesday.

"The fact of the matter is, when the economy is suffering, when people feel that their jobs are at risk...people feel absolutely shaken up. And so I think that's a natural sense that, 'well we want the president to be able to lead us out of this.'"

Her candid remarks follow a string of admissions from the White House that the economy is taking its toll on the American psyche and that could weigh on Mr. Obama's poll numbers.

Jarrett said that the struggle to right the economy is going to be a tough "slog" but says the president is up to the task. She also denied that the president's recent remarks that he is the "underdog" in the upcoming election is a sign of weakness.

"He's always been the underdog," she said.

"I mean, my goodness, somebody with the name Barack Hussein Obama who got to be the president of the United States. That was a long shot...It just makes him work harder because he also appreciates how high the stakes are, not for him but for our country..."

Still, a comparison between the president's track record to any potential opponent's will reveal stark contrasts, Jarrett said, and he's not giving up, "He's gonna fight like the dickens to win this election."