US President Barack Obama has decided to run his re-election campaign from his native Chicago, in the hope of recreating the 2008 winning formula.
Although the next US presidential election is not until November 2012, and President Barack Obama has little idea who his Republican opponent will be, discussions about the re-election effort have been taking place for months.
Aides have now revealed that Mr Obama decided on Chicago in order to help the campaign to escape the insular political atmosphere of Washington and to connect more easily with the real America.
The campaign will start by rebuilding the grassroots volunteer network that was crucial to Mr Obama's earlier success.
However, no president in the modern era has been re-elected with a headquarters so far from the capital, and some White House officials argued that the move to Chicago would lead to a lack of co-ordination.
Mr Obama will send Jim Messina, his deputy chief of staff, to run the campaign, along with two other aides, Julianna Smoot and Jennifer O'Malley Dillon. David Axelrod, his chief adviser in the White House and a Chicago native, will return home to advise the campaign.
The president's thoughts are turning to re-election at a time when he is enjoying surprising political momentum. Despite a heavy defeat for his Democratic allies in Congress in November's midterm elections, he has since outmanoeuvred Republicans by moving to the centre. He has also been praised for his handling of the Arizona shooting.
Recent polls have shown that voters are increasingly appreciative of the president's job performance. A Wall Street Journal/NBC News survey showed Mr Obama's approval rating surging to 53 per cent, eight points higher than in December.
He is likely to begin campaigning in late spring or early summer, around the same time in the cycle as Bill Clinton and George W Bush, who both won second terms.
Within the next few months a number of Republicans hoping to win the nomination to challenge Mr Obama will throw their hats into the ring. Likely contenders include several former state governors such as Mitt Romney, Tim Pawlenty, Mike Huckabee and Sarah Palin, as well as Newt Gingrich, the former Speaker of the House.
Even at this early stage, the thrust of Mr Obama's case for re-election is clear. He will maintain that he staved off a second Great Depression and urge Americans not to change course in the middle of a recovery, however slow it may be.
He will also seek to turn his landmark health care reform into an electoral asset and say he has renewed America's image abroad after the polarising presidency of George W Bush. He will also be able to say he has brought US troops home from Iraq.