Barack Obama: Prematurely Written Off?

owedtojoy

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A month ago, Barack Obama's party received the worst drubbing for any party at a mid-term election. Despite his many achievements, he was widely written off. Yet, Barack Obama has produced a remarkable political comeback - what some people have even called a "miracle".

Against all the odds, and with moderate Republican support, two key measures backed by the Administration were passed by the legislators - the repeal of DADT & the New START Treaty on nuclear weapons with Russia. Now, the Obama Administration can point to two major victories that eluded Bill Clinton.

Obama also made a controversial deal with Republicans over taxation, one that is unpolular with Progressives, but one that seems popular with the country at large.

So, at the mid-point of his Administration, and without a majority in the House, Obama has probably run his course as a reformer. He must now seriously start running for office again. Personally, I think he should never have stopped - running for office is something he does really well.

So what are his prospects? How much better do we know him now - Strengths? Weaknesses? Threats? Opportunities?
 


Schomberg

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Can't have been easy for the guy. He was given an almost Messianic status around the world and he was never going to live up to the hype.
 

Catalpa

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A month ago, Barack Obama's party received the worst drubbing for any party at a mid-term election. Despite his many achievements, he was widely written off. Yet, Barack Obama has produced a remarkable political comeback - what some people have even called a "miracle".

Against all the odds, and with moderate Republican support, two key measures backed by the Administration were passed by the legislators - the repeal of DADT & the New START Treaty on nuclear weapons with Russia. Now, the Obama Administration can point to two major victories that eluded Bill Clinton.

Obama also made a controversial deal with Republicans over taxation, one that is unpolular with Progressives, but one that seems popular with the country at large.

So, at the mid-point of his Administration, and without a majority in the House, Obama has probably run his course as a reformer. He must now seriously start running for office again. Personally, I think he should never have stopped - running for office is something he does really well.

So what are his prospects? How much better do we know him now - Strengths? Weaknesses? Threats? Opportunities?
Well he has an uphill struggle to be re-elected.

Of course as the incumbent he wields a lot of power and patronage and so long as he has no major personal scandal fall out of a cupboard or from under a table he can at least go into the next race with a clean sheet.

But a major foreign policy screw (as opposed to a gaffe) could cost him dear.

On the other hand if he faced down a foreign power and made them eat humble pie then that would works wonders with the folks back home.

Way too early to say right now though.
 

Sync

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He lives and dies on the economy. No one cares about the nukes.

The people who care one way or the other about DADT were either going to vote for him anyway, or were never going to vote for him. There's no one out there who's thinking "Hm, DADT's been abolished. Gonna vote me Demmecrat next time".

A lot of the kids are gone. Not closing Gitmo, not leaving Afghanistan, not turning water into wine got rid of the more fickle youth vote.

The health bill and the tax deal have damaged his credibility amongst waivering voters and hardline democrats. That damage needs to be undone as a priority in the next year and a half.

A particular concern he needs to work on is to have drafted a plan on immigration reform if Rubio goes as the VP candidate for the Reps.

Ultimately though, none of this matters if the Republicans throw their hands up and throw a loser candidate out there. A moderate republican has a real shot at taking this. Palin, or a hardline tearpartier doesn't.
 

owedtojoy

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Well he has an uphill struggle to be re-elected.

Of course as the incumbent he wields a lot of power and patronage and so long as he has no major personal scandal fall out of a cupboard or from under a table he can at least go into the next race with a clean sheet.

But a major foreign policy screw (as opposed to a gaffe) could cost him dear.

On the other hand if he faced down a foreign power and made them eat humble pie then that would works wonders with the folks back home.

Way too early to say right now though.
Actually, it is not that bad.

There is no contender out there that the Republicans can rally around. Palin is pretty hopeless, and Romney is a sort of Stepford Wife - he tries hard to please, but what is there behind the facade?

Threats - definitely a successful terrorist attack could cost him dear, "soft on terrorism" is the old Republican refrain, mainly because he won't torture anyone. He has done pretty well so far.

Opportunity - a major victory over terrorists would also be a big boost, like capturing or killing bin Laden.
 

hmmm

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I don't know who it is who has been writing Obama off but this has not been reflected in the polls. Despite the dip in his ratings he is still substantially favoured over any of his potential rivals, and that despite a desperate US recession and a Repub onslaught. The economy appears to be recovering just in time for the presidential election cycle. With any luck, he will either face Palin or a candidate substantially weakened by having to tack towards the idiot woman's support and Obama will come home with a 60% vote.
 

Tea Party Patriot

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As Sync said he has a year and half to fix the economy, if it is going well by then (which I don't see happening to honest) then he will be re-elected.

As Clinton said: "it’s the economy stupid"

Just look at Ireland and FF, people voted them in three elections in a row when the economy was going well, now they will even deny having ever voted for them. The same goes in the States, although I too think Palin would be a poor choice, but I have a feeling at this stage it will be Tim Pawlenty, if it is he will appeal to hard-line democrats and tea partiers, pair him with Rubio and Obama will be in trouble.
 

owedtojoy

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He lives and dies on the economy. No one cares about the nukes.

The people who care one way or the other about DADT were either going to vote for him anyway, or were never going to vote for him. There's no one out there who's thinking "Hm, DADT's been abolished. Gonna vote me Demmecrat next time".

A lot of the kids are gone. Not closing Gitmo, not leaving Afghanistan, not turning water into wine got rid of the more fickle youth vote.

The health bill and the tax deal have damaged his credibility amongst waivering voters and hardline democrats. That damage needs to be undone as a priority in the next year and a half.

A particular concern he needs to work on is to have drafted a plan on immigration reform if Rubio goes as the VP candidate for the Reps.

Ultimately though, none of this matters if the Republicans throw their hands up and throw a loser candidate out there. A moderate republican has a real shot at taking this. Palin, or a hardline tearpartier doesn't.
DADT was a running sore with Progressives.

The youth votes loses interest between Presidential elections. The Democrats forgave Bill Clinton his gaffes and defeats in 1996 and voted him back in.

When Democrats see the alternative, they will return to Obama. If Romney runs as a centrist, he will alienate the Tea Party who might put up Palin as a 3rd party candidate. Immigration reform is a non-no for Republicans who seem to be intent on losting the Latino vote for ever.

These are all opportunities for Obama. It is significant that his courting of moderate Rpublicans likes Snow, Collins and Brown suddenly paid off. These are up for re-election and will need to define themselves as non-Tea-Party.
The tensions in teh GOP are a big boon.

But you are right - the economy must improve, or at least get no worse.
 

rash mulligan

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New START Treaty on nuclear weapons with Russia.

That,s recycled nonsense, Reagan and Bush Sr have
been there and done that.
 

owedtojoy

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As Sync said he has a year and half to fix the economy, if it is going well by then (which I don't see happening to honest) then he will be re-elected.

As Clinton said: "it’s the economy stupid"

Just look at Ireland and FF, people voted them in three elections in a row when the economy was going well, now they will even deny having ever voted for them. The same goes in the States, although I too think Palin would be a poor choice, but I have a feeling at this stage it will be Tim Pawlenty, if it is he will appeal to hard-line democrats and tea partiers, pair him with Rubio and Obama will be in trouble.
He doesn't have to "fix the economy". He needs to show that things are getting better ... if there is general optimistic feel in 2012, the voters will stick with the devil they know, rather than a loopy Tea-Partier.

Pawlenty had a shot and being McCain's VP candidate and fluffed it. Not sure what he has now that is any better.
 

Tim Johnston

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I can't see the economy improving significantly in time for BO to claim credit for a recovery, I think his chances of re-election are very low. But it may also depend on who runs against him. Palin would have little chance, but someone like Pawlenty or even Rick Perry could put the GOP back in the White House.
 

rash mulligan

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Don,t ask don,t tell ?
I,m sure the gay community would be happy with
that, but I would have thought the Democrat
Candidate usually gets their vote anyway.

I,d say Obama probably will win re-election anyway
based on 2011 and 2112 being economicly better than
2009 and 2010. Nothing to do with gays or nukes.
 
Last edited:

owedtojoy

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New START Treaty on nuclear weapons with Russia.

That,s recycled nonsense, Reagan and Bush Sr have
been there and done that.
Rashers, Bush and Reagan were Republicans, don't ya know?

Obama is a Democrat. For a Democrat to get an arms treaty through the Senate with Republican support is pretty unprecedented .... since the 1960s I would say.

PS Write that in your X-files. Add what an ignorant snivelling little oaf you are.
 

Tea Party Patriot

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He doesn't have to "fix the economy". He needs to show that things are getting better ... if there is general optimistic feel in 2012, the voters will stick with the devil they know, rather than a loopy Tea-Partier.

Pawlenty had a shot and being McCain's VP candidate and fluffed it. Not sure what he has now that is any better.
Well over 50% of American's had no problem voting for Tea Partiers in the last election, if the economy isn't going well, and their are no signs it will be, they will do so again. Why I am saying Pawlenty is he is right-wing enough to keep tea partiers happy but not so far right as to upset centrists.
 

owedtojoy

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Well over 50% of American's had no problem voting for Tea Partiers in the last election, if the economy isn't going well, and their are no signs it will be, they will do so again. Why I am saying Pawlenty is he is right-wing enough to keep tea partiers happy but not so far right as to upset centrists.
As you well know, congressional elections do not always translate into presidential victories.
 

Tea Party Patriot

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As you well know, congressional elections do not always translate into presidential victories.
Will grant you that point; they are similar to council elections somewhat in that they often go against a government. The election will be dependent on the economy, I am firmly of the opinion that floating voters go with the perceived state of their pockets; if they were attached to a set of ideals they would have a political affiliation.
 

owedtojoy

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Will grant you that point; they are similar to council elections somewhat in that they often go against a government. The election will be dependent on the economy, I am firmly of the opinion that floating voters go with the perceived state of their pockets; if they were attached to a set of ideals they would have a political affiliation.
I think it is a tough one to call .... we will not really know until a few weeks after the two conventions in 2012. Up until that time, the polls are really shadow boxing, though no doubt we will be poring over them with fanatical interest and trying to interpret every twist!!! :D

One of Obama's strengths is that he plays a long game. He does not seem seriously to give a damn about the "24 hours news cycle" that Bush was obsessed with. That paid off to an extent with DADT, where he refused to be rushed into short term action, even after it looked as if repeal would not get through the Senate. (Strength)

His weakness is the obverse of that ... he lost so many news cycles that he got defined by what his opponents were saying about him. That was bad and cost him dear in the November elections. What is surprising is that is the opposite of the Obama we saw on campaign, though he is I suppose being true to "No-Drama Obama". (Weakness)

I am not surprised to see David Axelrod return to Chicago. The return of David Plouffe to the White House team might see a change in Obama's media tactics and more of a return to the Obama of 2007-2008.
 

Tea Party Patriot

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I think it is a tough one to call .... we will not really know until a few weeks after the two conventions in 2012. Up until that time, the polls are really shadow boxing, though no doubt we will be poring over them with fanatical interest and trying to interpret every twist!!! :D

One of Obama's strengths is that he plays a long game. He does not seem seriously to give a damn about the "24 hours news cycle" that Bush was obsessed with. That paid off to an extent with DADT, where he refused to be rushed into short term action, even after it looked as if repeal would not get through the Senate. (Strength)

His weakness is the obverse of that ... he lost so many news cycles that he got defined by what his opponents were saying about him. That was bad and cost him dear in the November elections. What is surprising is that is the opposite of the Obama we saw on campaign, though he is I suppose being true to "No-Drama Obama". (Weakness)

I am not surprised to see David Axelrod return to Chicago. The return of David Plouffe to the White House team might see a change in Obama's media tactics and more of a return to the Obama of 2007-2008.
Plouffe certainly made a good job of his campaign in 2008 and it will be interesting to see what his media strategy is.

The one thing I won't write Obama off on either is his oratory, which I expect to make a return when on an election footing. He is certainly one of the best speakers you will find, and even if you don't agree with what he is saying he has the ability to hold people’s attention and in a marginal campaign this will be in his favour.

I would discount polls right now, not completely but largely because until the primaries get under way a sitting president will do well when faced with a number of possibilities. If a Republican supporter of X is asked if he would vote for Republican Y against Obama right now he may not give a straight answer lest it would damage his hoped for candidates chances.
 

farnaby

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...No one cares about the nukes.

The people who care one way or the other about DADT were either going to vote for him anyway, or were never going to vote for him. There's no one out there who's thinking "Hm, DADT's been abolished. Gonna vote me Demmecrat next time"....
But Americans care about winners and if the story becomes about Obama overcoming Republican intransigence and winning battles like this he'll get the centrist vote, all other things being equal (economy recovers modestly, no major setbacks).

(As an aside have to mention Dylan Moran's comment when Obama warned of the hard tasks ahead for everyone after his deifying campaign - "no you do it superjesusman" :lol:)
 

WyldeOne

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"Against all the odds, and with moderate Republican support, two key measures backed by the Administration were passed by the legislators - the repeal of DADT & the New START Treaty on nuclear weapons with Russia. Now, the Obama Administration can point to two major victories that eluded Bill Clinton."

How do you figure "against all odds?" Democrats still hold the House and Senate. The only way DADT was going to be overturned was if it was done this month.

Obama has the presidency for now. It's just his to lose, just as it has been since he was elected.
 


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