Today, The Urban Politico and The Uppity Negro have joined forces to tackle an impending question that has rapidly moved to the forefront of our collective minds in these recent days since we’ve officially arrived in the year 2011: Will President Barack Obama be re-elected next year? It’s a simple question but it doesn’t necessarily have a simple answer. Up until now, the answer to this question has been dismissed around the blogosphere as premature since the year “twenty-twelve” sounded like it was so far away. But now we’re here; 2012 is literally around just around the corner. So it’s time to ask ourselves – is this man going to actually be re-elected? Today, the Uppity Negro will make the argument as to why Obama will NOT be re-elected next year, and we will do our best to make the argument as to why Obama WILL be re-elected next year. The Urban Politico team weighs in after the jump:
UNN Editor’s Note: Today I and The Urban Politico have joined forces and done a guest blogging exchange. The topic we chose was simply whether or not Barack Obama will be elected or not come the 2012 election year. To hear both sides of the topic, read here what the gentlemen from Urban Politico have to say in favor of the matter, and make sure to head on over to their website to hear what I had to say. I must say, that I think they had the easier task, it certainly was a mind stretch to come up with ways why Obama will NOT be re-elected. Make sure to leave those comments down in the c-section and let them know how you feel about it (and they’ve also been added to the blogroll :-) —>)
Obama will be re-elected in 2012, but if you think we’re basing this assertion off of any blind partisan love for the Democratic party then think again. We have no such love. And just so we’re clear, we’re not a fan of the Republicans either. So we’re not going to waste anybody’s time here sprinkling fairy dust about Democratic party this or Republican party that. We’re just going to tell it like it is.
Looking at Obama the individual, you must be impressed with his resiliency. Right now, not only are there demonstrations taking place in Egypt, Lebanon, and throughout the Middle East, but here at home in Wisconsin, Indiana and Ohio. Unemployment is over 9%. There is gridlock in Congress with a potential government shut down on the horizon. The Democrats are TERRIBLE at marketing themselves and their accomplishments. Things are SO bad – even NFL football is in trouble :) – it is amazing that Obama STILL has an approval rating near 50%. Why? Because people like him. They feel that with all the crap he inherited and all the crap going on, he is still doing a good job and is doing what he can to improve the lives of American citizens.
If we look at the Rahm Emanuel victory in Chicago, we see one of the many reasons why Obama will be re-elected. When it comes to running a campaign, Obama is an athlete. His administration runs a very disciplined and organized campaign shop. It is already difficult to unseat a sitting president with connections, political clout and financial supporters. Once you add in the fact that Obama’s grass roots campaign is one the likes of which has never been seen before, it makes removing him from office a very daunting task.
Furthermore, despite all the gripes that folks on the Left and Right may have with the job Obama is (or is not) doing, governing has virtually ZERO impact on campaigning. So long as a candidate’s approval ratings are within quasi-reasonable margins, their administration is effectively handed a clean slate once campaign season begins. This seemingly unexplainable phenomenon takes place every four years mainly because the American people have the political memory of a goldfish. Once a general election begins, it’s as if a giant Jedi mind trick sweeps across the entire country and wipes away all memory of the previous 4 years. History has provided us with ample evidence of this fact. Remember how Bush 43 took the country to war over false info, gave tax cuts to the rich and took away programs for the disadvantaged during his first term, only to be re-elected in even greater numbers for his second term? Remember how Clinton passed Don’t Ask Don’t Tell, got caught up with the Whitewater scandal, and failed to pass health care reform yet still was re-elected in record numbers? All of this is to say, Obama may have negatives now, but hardly any of Obama’s negatives are going to matter once campaign season gets underway. This will give a decided advantage to Obama who has already proven himself to be a skillful campaigner, besting the inevitable Hillary Clinton during the 2008 Democratic primary despite being handicapped by the infamous Rev. Wright controversy, and likewise defeating John McCain and Sarah Palin whose introduction to the national spotlight, many agree, momentarily stole the momentum away from the Obama campaign. So unless the Republicans can produce a candidate that can play campaign chess as well as Obama, the odds are in Obama’s favor next year.
Yet another reason why Obama will be re-elected as President is because despite his shameless pandering to the Right Wing, and his seeming indifference to the particular economic struggles of Black Americans, he is STILL going to be the best Democratic choice in 2012. And unless we’re very much mistaken, the Republicans really don’t have anyone currently who can combine charisma, character, and competence in a way that excites voters.
The bloom may be off the Obama rose…but are people really going to elect Sarah Palin?
Winking and sexy glasses may work for Rich Lowry but the MILF demographic is not that large. Romney has all the earnest appeal and trust factor of your average used car salesman. Donald Trump personifies sleaze. And Trump’s suddenly pro-life?? He won’t get out of a primary. Huckabee may get the Christian Right but President Huckabee doesn’t quite have a ring to it does it? Ron Paul has the character down but he also has the unfortunate habit of saying what he means on live TV. He’s another one that won’t get out of the primary. Pawlenty, Christie and Ryan-too nerdy, too fat and too weird looking. Bloomberg, although a registered Independent, may listen to his inner megalomaniac voice and throw his hat in the ring but he will quickly find out that folks in the Midwest and especially the South aren’t going to vote for a prissy gun-grabber.
The darker the Republican image becomes, the brighter the Democrats’ image becomes. Right now, the Republicans do not have a positive face. Sure, it’s one thing to run AGAINST Pelosi and Reid, it’s completely different to govern. The Republicans have allowed Sarah Palin, Rush Limbaugh and Michelle Bachmann do all of the talking for them. They get all the news and attention. When asked for a Republican perspective on a certain issue, the media asks them. With elections just over one year away, who is the go to person in the Republican party that is seen as smart and reasonable? No one. Right now, Palin, Limbaugh and Bachmann are viewed, by and large, as extremists. They are not seen as being mainstream, and by association, the Republican Party (which is bowing to the whims and wishes of the Tea Party) is seen as moving even further to the Right, leaving many moderates behind. Combined with the negative images of the Republican Governor in Wisconsin, Republicans no longer look like a party for the working class, or for the people. They appear to be attacking minorities, women, the elderly, college students, the working class and unions. If anyone can stand up to the rally of the Tea Party, it is women, minorities, college students and the working class. Bottom line, the Republicans have pissed off the wrong people. As a result, not only will they lose the independent and moderate votes, the law of unintended consequences will increase the turnout of those that support the Democrats, sweeping not only the presidential election, but the Congressional and state elections as well.
So if unemployment is below 8% by the summer of 2012 and the Republicans and Tea Partiers keep on doing what they’re currently doing, get ready for another four years of Obama.