Why is there any serious discussion about Congressman and former Republican Vice Presidential candidate, Paul Ryan’s budget as if it will actually be signed into law in its current form? The Congressional Budget Office, the non partisan team of folks specifically assigned to assist the Congress with data regarding taxes, revenues and the budget process in Congress refuses to even look at Ryan’s budget because the Congressman from Wisconsin doesn’t provide any details on how he intends to reach the goals he outlined within the budget he submitted.
So lets look at it this way, the Congressman has just about every republican on Capital Hill touting his budget plan even though they have no idea as to how the goals will be attained. What we do know is its practically the same budget Romney and Ryan ran on in the 2012 election; the same one he submitted in 2011 and the same one he offered in early 2008, the same of which, most Americans starkly voted against. More specifically, there are specific targets for taxes and spending within the budget but no indication as to how he believes Congress will act to ensure those targets are met.
Something else the Congressman has done to create a balanced budget in the next 10 years is he conveniently left off any discretionary spending for natural disasters. Currently, Congress has always included a specific amount to go towards disasters like Hurricanes Katrina and Sandy to assist with clean up and aid, but Ryan no longer wants that in the budget.
What would be the benefit of removing aid for natural disasters? Everyone always looks for aid when it’s their state. If a legislator failed to ask for help, he or she would most certainly be ousted from Office in the next election. However, it’s good politics to cut those same funds off from anyone else who may need them.
Amazingly enough, this GOP position more than likely seems to affect Republican governors more than Democratic ones. Currently there are thirty Republicans occupying State Houses so that probability is easier to quantify. Governor Chris Christie and former Governor of Mississippi, Haley Barbour know all too well of the disaster relief frustrations, both Sandy and Katrina respectively.
Interestingly, the House of Representatives voted today in favor, again, in favor of Ryan’s budget plan 221-207. It is the same budget blueprint Ryan has proposed since April, 2008. “There was an election about that, I thought they [republicans] got the message…they didn’t get the message”, said Senator Barbara Boxer (D-CA). I must say, if at first you don’t succeed with the budget proposal, just submit it again next fiscal year.
Truth be told, democrats wanted the GOP to pass Ryan’s budget in the House so they could be tied to what they believe are poor choices that are not lining up with the new autopsy rhetoric coming from the RNC this week. Now that the GOP has once again strapped itself to what is being called an incentive plan for those at the bottom of the economic ladder, dems will insist a balanced budget can’t fall solely on the elderly and the poor.
This budget couldn’t pass the Senate and it won’t. The House wants to make Medicare private and paid out through a voucher…well that wont happen if dems have their way. Here’s the skinny on the positions of both parties. The democrats can’t balance their budget without additional revenues or tax increases and the Republicans can balance their budget without more spending cuts…lots of spending cuts. The problem is, Republicans need more cuts than Democrats need increases. Regardless, this is the standoff.
Both sides will lose significantly in their districts if they vote for the other. Dems can’t vote cut Medicare and other entitlements for the second time in a year and the GOP can’t vote to increase taxes again, twice in a year. Both however made concessions toward the debt ceiling increases, not the long term budget, yet they will both remind each other that they just gave at the office.
Both can stand to do more, both will need to do more. Republicans in the House have hinted that corporate loopholes could stand to be closed to help get to a balanced approach although those loophole closures were no where to be found in Ryan’s budget which was voted on today.
Democrats have suggested additional cuts, not entitlements like Medicaid or Food stamps for those recently unemployed will make that list, so we’ll have to see if they include those cuts in their budget expected to submitted in the Senate.
Republicans know, regardless of what they say of Ryan’s budget, that it was DOA since it needs ObamaCare to be repealed in order to reach balance. Democrats know they must submit a budget, something they hadn’t done in Obama’s whole term, as to not reveal their hand. Tough choices will need to be made, no more commissions, panels or the like. We know everyone will need to get involved.
Their goals are somehow different, GOP officials would love to balance the budget, dems could care less, so that makes most of this all political fodder. Before this all over, there will be 1,000 amendments, forced votes and tricky posturings from both sides. Nothing significant will get done the closer we get to 2014 midterms. That’s my story and um sticking to it.
Earlier this week, “The Former” (my nickname for Hillary Clinton, since her list of former jobs is too long to mention) saw Senator Rob Portman do something she had never done; something no republican Senator has done and saw the door to The White House inch a bit more toward the closing hinge. When the Ohio Senator reversed himself and came out on the side of same sex marriage, his simple admission made her silence on the issue deafening.
Although Hillary Clinton has said time and time again that she is not running or considering a run for the Oval in 2016, she jumped up from the lazy boy, got decked out in a formal dress and filmed a video for the Human Rights Campaign’s website where she finally officially launched her support full throated for gay marriage in this country.
Why is that significant? Hillary, “The Former” has been the First Lady of the United States, Senator from New York, 2008 Presidential Candidate for the United States of America, Secretary of State but at no time had she ever clarified her position on gay marriage. Not until she entered retirement had she felt the need to now, of all times, make this statement? Hmmm. Sounds like someone is attempting to keep all her options open.
If you ever wanted to know how the Clinton’s earned the moniker “The Clinton Machine”, here’s how. Although Bill Clinton recently had been out on the circuit conducting speeches about repealing DOMA, (Defense of Marriage Act), Portman’s heart reversal on the matter reignited much of the “is she for it-or is she not” chatter that has dogged Mrs. Clinton. Even after Biden’s support and President Obama’s shift late last year, Hillary was silent which caused many to begin to wonder more publicly about where she stood.
What you may not have known is, 17 years ago when DOMA was signed into law, the President who signed it in the Oval Office was one President William Jefferson Clinton. Are you confused yet? Well, how would you like to be the President who signed into law, a bill which prevents same sex marriage now that the country is more tolerant of it and several states have now passed legislation to permit it but your bill is the only thing standing in their way?
How would you like to be the President who signed DOMA into law, when your wife has a chance to be the first woman to be President of the United States and gay rights is likely to be the catalyst to catapult her into the very Oval Office you signed the bill in? Something had to be done. Portman and other slowly evolving republicans could potentially steal this moment away from the democrats while Hillary hunkered down in retirement…so the machine was once again activated.
On the Sunday following the Portman announcement, Former President Bill Clinton personally penned an Op-Ed (Opinion Editorial) in the New York Times publicly calling for the repeal of the very law he himself as president signed into law. In the piece, he recalled the motivations for the bill and special caveats he added to the bill which showed then, that he supported gay rights, but the country was not yet ready.
Mr. Clinton said, “…while our laws may at times lag behind our best natures, in the end they catch up to our core values”. The former President went on to say, “I know now that, even worse than providing an excuse for discrimination, the law is itself discriminatory. It should be overturned. As a true “I fall on my sword” moment, the machine got out in front to own the issue; or so we thought.
Just as the media began the Hillary-is-she chatter again, TheFormer sealed the Democratic Presidential nomination today with her public support of repealing DOMA. And just like that, the machine once again knee-capped any potential opponent who wondered to themselves privately or aloud, were the Clintons going to show up in 2015 to play.
This one move by its own virtue keeps the door open for the nation’s first female POTUS in 2016. If you think for a moment the GOP isn’t looking for Newt to pull out his old strategy book on the Clintons that he had tucked away when he was Speaker you should be checked out. Just think, the only person EVER to beat the machine is currently sitting in the Oval that may soon be occupied by a woman.
This is something they both know very well, so the former President threw down the gauntlet for Obama to return the campaign favor when he said in the Times on Sunday, “In that spirit, I join with the Obama administration, the petitioner Edith Windsor, and the many other dedicated men and women who have engaged in this struggle for decades in urging the Supreme Court to overturn the Defense of Marriage Act. Ding-Ding-Ding! Let’s get ready to rumble! That’s my story and um sticking to it.
Why is the country still waiting for the republican Speaker of the House, John Boehner to “negotiate” a deal to avert the nation’s financial crisis when after this week’s demonstration that he no longer clearly has the authority to corral them into the pen to forge a compromise with the President on the financial crisis?
Although many still say Mr. Boehner has their respect and is not in jeopardy of losing his speaker-ship early next year, only the fallout from the final deficit deal after Jan 1 will ultimately decide that. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce jumped into the fray to show support for Speaker Boehner’s failed Plan B option which he himself pulled when Boehner realized he could not get his members of his own party to support it. Even after a day of arm twisting and nudging.
Just know, when the Speaker of the House, the person third in line of succession to the presidency, cannot get his own party members to support his plan, any plan, even after he and his Majority Leader, Eric Cantor (R-VA) had gone on television and stated that they would have the votes (VIDEO) necessary to push the bill. What bill? Instead of supporting Obama’s bill, the one campaigned on, where anyone who earns above $250,000 would see a tax increase of about 2.5%. Basically, taking their tax rates up on what they would owe, while then lowering the tax rates on middle income earners to help them lighten their load and to spend more.
Republicans didn’t like that proposal while the President was campaigning on it and they don’t like it now, although many voters supported the Obama idea. Polls continue to show that the public is still behind the President and they want to see his plan implemented. You would think, after this recent election, republicans would be willing to heed the concerns of the electorate….well in a way they are, their own.
Why would these republicans, who all want deficit reduction, who have been talking about this for almost two years like a plague, now run the opposite direction from their Leader Cantor and their Speaker Boehner and away from the “will of the people” who stand with the President according to a recent typically conservative tracking poll.
The reason is simple, these conservatives are worried about their re-election possibilities next near in 2013 and others in 2014. You see, although most support the deficit reduction plan behind the scenes, they are not willing to publicly support anything; anything at all, that Obama likes because their constituents don’t like the President. The Senate Minority Leader, Mitch McConnell (R-KY) wants to wait a year, literally kick the can down the road once again, because he is worried about losing his job to an actress, Ashley Judd who hasn’t even stated whether she was running against him or not. The Senator is so worried, he paid to have a poll done which show Ms. Judd, who is only “considering” a run, 4% points behind McConnell.
What I want to do is merely explain the real reason why there is no deal on the table. Negotiating is not the problem, fear of losing their jobs is the problem. When the Speaker threatens you and you walk away from his or her threats, it’s because there is a much bigger threat on the horizon for you that makes the Speaker’s “arm twisting” null; and that’s the voters in your home district. Is this fear warranted? Absolutely.
Keep on mind, the President wants tax rates, the percentage of taxes paid, to increase for people earning $250,000 or more, but Boehner’s plan B counter offer called for an increase for those who earned over $1 million and his entire party revolted against it. That is a $750,000 dollar gap in incomes, clearly, people making one million could afford it, but republicans, to date at least, feel any increase is one they can’t return home and explain.
Mr. Boehner made a mistake this week; a big one. He created this bill to increase the rates on those earning one million or more only to show The White House that his caucus was solid with only rates for the higher earning folks and would not be able to go down to what the President wanted, $250,000. However, republicans left Mr. Boehner out to dry when they refused to even support his fake bill; his “show” of solidarity. So the deficit reduction plan is still not an effective plan because….(drumroll)…republicans are protecting the tax rates of millionaires. The truth is, millionaires are just on the receiving end of the gift, because republicans just don’t want any taxes to go up.
So once again, will everyone suffer, as the President puts it, because republicans can’t make the tough choices? Every republican believes tax rates on the middle income earners should not go up, but…but…they can’t seem to bring themselves to save the people who need it most for fear their support for the wealthy losing would ultimately cost them votes in the midterms. Wicked world.
This entire quagmire should be left at the feet of the GOP because they gave the President every advantage when creating the financial “cliff” a year ago. They were so confident the President would lose his re-election bid, that they put everything on the table in the “do or die” financial talks. If a deal was not reached, based on a committee put in place by both parties, a year ago which was designed to come up with a balanced approach to dealing with the debt, this “man-made” cliff would then force both sides back to the table to hammer out a plan, because as agreed, they both would lose significantly. Tax rates would go up across the board and spending would drop to all the programs democrats cherish.
The problem is, republicans never thought Americans would support Obama’s plan and therefore if it failed, Americans would blame them [republicans] instead for the failure. Lets not forget, one year ago it was pushed to this year because it was election time and republicans as well as democrats feared the negotiation would hamper their re-election potential. This was to force them back to the table, well, this is the table! But what do they want to do again? Push it one more year…nonsense.
This is about their own futures and not mine. These people are ridiculous and simply should not be trusted. They are entertainers on a world stage, no different from the likes of Lady Gaga, dressed up for the lights and the cameras, playing on their twitter feeds for banter. You guys are lame if you make people suffer anymore than they already have for this self inflicted horror. That’s my story and um sticking to it.
I will take the leap into the weeds to explain how the echo chamber of election year politics has caused many to miss the big picture. The noise of cable news chatter has distorted the more obvious cues to take away from the current state of the race. There will be no blow out, that much is certain. There will be no runaway mandate for the President, he will break 50% and will likely come extremely close to rising just under 50%, 51% may be more than optimistic and the polls just don’t show it.
No one likes to jump out for fear of being incorrect, yet both men spent most of the election cycle doing just that; being wrong and what does one of them get?…keys to 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and a page in the American history books. This is not based on partisan views but rather the reality of the polling data; if you believe in them.
Lets take a look at the battleground states: going forward, they are considered battles because this is geography where the political parties actually have to vigorously campaign to convince voters for their support. These states currently are not deciding their electoral votes by ideology alone but issues that concern their lives and their families.
Ohio has polled consistently for weeks for Obama. Every poll for that matter has had the President over Romney from 1-6% points. Even conservative leaning polls have shown this throughout. Ohio has gotten the attention it has because it is historically known for deciding the presidency. Obama could go on to win without Ohio, Romney is not so fortunate. No republican has ever won The White House without Ohio. With a severely conservative Governor and Congress, Obama will carry Ohio.
This is significant for the historical reasons I just mentioned. Beyond that, the electoral votes lost to the Romney campaign, makes the path to victory implausible; not impossible. The plausibility is difficult to imagine considering the ridiculous amount of other states that are also battles that Romney would have to win. That math is way too fuzzy.
Good news for Romney, he will carry North Carolina. Barack Obama won the state in 2004, the first democrat to carry it since the 60′s but as I’ve said before, his win then, was more about republicans in the Carolina’s not wanting to drink the Palin-aid! It was always going to be difficult to duplicate the “historical moment”. You can only elect the first African American as President of the United States once.
With North Carolina in the Romney win-column and Ohio dragging Obama closer to the finish line, Romney would have to clean the table with the remaining battleground states: Florida, Nevada, Iowa, Virginia, Wisconsin and Colorado. That’s just not going to happen folks. The math to make that scenario work just hasn’t been discovered. Florida will go to Obama as I have said from the beginning in part due to the heavy minority (Latino and African American) turnout.
This year, more than ever, African Americans have mailed in their ballots in the Miami-Dade County area, a heavy democratic portion of the state, to ensure they were not disenfranchised. Latinos in the Central Florida area will also continue to pour out in favor of Obama. Not because of Obama solely, but also because of Romney’s support of self deportation as an immigration policy. Problem is, those Latinos in Central Florida are not from the Dominican Republic, Cuba or Columbia, but they are already Americans, from Puerto Rico.
Nevada, is already gone to Obama, so this is no longer considered in my book as a battle. Latinos in Nevada will bring the state for Obama. These folks are largely descendants, family, friends of neighboring Mexicans. Again, hurt by his strong “anti” immigration proposals, this will cost Romney significantly in Nevada.
Wisconsin will go to Obama due to the growing demographic shifts in the state. Residents there are similar to those in Ohio, where family and earning a honest living is the cultural character and embedded in the citizen tapestry. Wisconsin, also governed by conservative State officials from the Governor down, however, the heavy union presence and manufacturing industry will establish a voter turnout ground game unmatched ever in history by the GOP. The former Community Organizer has to be good at this, mobilizing his voters.
Virginia, also much desired by Romney and honestly needed just as much as Ohio, will be decisive for Obama. The race for the Presidential ticket as well as the Virginia Senate seat will be razor thin, probably the closest of all Senate races (other than Montana- but not a battleground). Keep your eye on this race. Some have speculated that Romney will take the state, but Democrats will take the Senate race, but I disagree. Dems will hold both.
They will hold both because the military, a strong dominant presence in Oceana, Virginia is no longer your father’s U.S. Navy. Our young military personnel are more of a product of this new social acceptance than the last. Issues once viewed as conservative in the military are now more socially acceptable. Reversing Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell did not break the military or put military personnel in harms way as opponents and critics of Obama’s reversal once predicted. Michelle Obama has made military families her personal drumbeat, just as Nancy Reagan had the “Say No To Drugs” mantle.
The loss of Virginia and Ohio will be the signal for the Secret Service to get Romney’s motorcade cranked, doors open and begin the journey to the convention floor to speak to his supporters to share the bad news. Without Florida, maybe-almost; kinda, but without Ohio and Virginia, math. Colorado is the closest of the battles for me. The reason it is close in Colorado is the strong Latino vote has voted overwhelming for Obama and according to exit polling, they have voted early.
Colorado will be thin as ice, but will go to Obama. There may be some slow counts in Colorado and Virginia, although Virginia has historically done well, this year is different. Ohio cost John Kerry the presidential race in 2004 against George W. Bush, and will cost one of these men on Election Day. Lastly of the battles is New Hampshire. Currently polls have this race all over the place, but post hurricane Sandy polls show Obama has clinched a solid 2% lead. Turnout will be key, but New Hampshire will send its 4 electoral votes to Obama.
These are all my predictions based on what information I am looking at. There will be an Obama victory because simply, the math is easier to achieve if you’re Obama than if you’re Romney. There is only one path for the GOP nominee, but several for Obama. It looks more like McCain of ’08, he too only had one path, then Senator Obama shut every door leading to that path. Romney’s attempt to circle back in the 11th hour for Pennsylvania, his first visit there in months was widely viewed as a last minute attempt to stretch the map a bit for another alternative since they see what I see.
PA is tighter than it was several weeks ago following the first presidential debate, but more than that I believe; through political and electoral neglect, the numbers began to move-not for or against, but instead back to zero, the middle. So although we may view the polls as tightening or Obama’s gap narrowing, back to zero through neglect.
Romney should not be expected to win any more than 220 electoral votes amidst the presidential hype. We all wanted a tight race just so we didn’t rubber-stamp the next occupant of The White House, but we also wanted to ensure the next resident was moving in with the keen awareness of what would be expected.
The map gives Obama a victory at 310-319 electoral votes once the dust settles. There are a lot of things that are different from 2008, so many that I can’t list here, but to those who support him, they simply do not care-a win is a win and more directly, the final score is less important. The frustration the republicans will have at losing will be less bout Romney and more that the party lost again, twice in a row.
Republicans will turn on themselves before uniting in defiance once again in opposition to this President as they did following the ’08 election. This time however, it will be different. They will have to work a different plan since the first one failed to work. Democrats will take an Obama loss more personal. They will see cultural wars, opposition and disenfranchisement as likely enemies. Their hope for inclusion will be confirmed with an Obama re-election and their fears confirmed with a Romney win.
The Clinton legacy will be enshrined and Obama will not have been a fluke. Healthcare will become the Obama legacy and not just preventing a second Great Depression. Romney will write a book, give some speeches and fight to stay relevant amid the conservative rancor. It may be best to lay low for a while like W. The party will have to check itself. Democrats will need to produce an agenda now that Obama has four more years, Republicans will have to find away to actually expand their base of support and stop worrying about expanding the electoral map.
This morning, on Election Day, Romney is back in Pennsylvania, the second visit in two days after the campaign all but ceded the state to Obama over the last month or so. This is an attempt grow the electoral map at the last minute because Romney sees the math not working out. The party will need to grow their base; more support from different kinds of voters not just White working class me and seniors. That’s my story and um sticking to it.
Formed from a Tropical wave in the Caribbean Sea on October 24, Hurricane Sandy terrorized the people of Kingston, Jamaica, flooded the shores of Haiti-killing over 54 natives; the Hurricane struck Cuba on October 25 and then went on to temporarily paralyze the island of Bahamas turning the first days into a deadly storm claiming over 60 lives…and that was before ever broaching America’s northeastern coasts.
The damage in the northeast is still being determined at the moment with millions still without electricity and clean drinking water. Our American political system came to a screeching halt with U.S. elections flatly approaching to tend to the aid of those pushed out of their homes by rising waters. Yet Karl Rove, the republican strategist responsible for crafting George W. Bush’s presidency from the Texas Governor’s mansion as well as his re-election campaign in 2004 has made one of the dumbest comments ever heard from such a smart man.
Rove, since his time in Bush’s White House has become the conservative’s electoral king maker; his voice is the big stick republicans trip over themselves to carry. He tactically lays out their battle plan in addition to serving as the party’s unofficial Chairman At-Large. Yesterday, Rove referenced the presidential race between Mitt Romney and President Obama post Hurrican Sandy and said …Sandy helped the Obama.
With thousands of victims out on the street, several million still without electricity and the loss of life, totals still climbing, what about the devastating storm could have aided the President so positively? Has he been able to give them housing? NO? Or maybe Obama has even able to give them all Food? No? Um, we’ll what about some hope? The sight of the current damage has brought many to tears so that too may be a hard feat for the President to accomplish this soon. So then, what exactly was Rove talking about?
For four days, Obama pulled away from the campaign and put election politics aside to actually do his job as a leader. And yes, he [Obama] was able to utilize the trappings of the Office to bring attention to the plight of those badly weathering the storm. He coordinated FEMA and emergency responders to the New York Tri-State area…but simply as the Comforter-In-Chief, nothing more. Mr. Rove believes when republican candidate, Mitt Romney cancelled his campaign events and stepped to the side to allow the nation to take care of the devastation, it was a “stutter” step.
Karl Rove doesn’t disagree that this brief pause by Romney was necessary, however, he said “anytime you have attention drawn away somewhere else or to something else, it’s not an advantage for him [Romney]“. So maybe Rove was referring to challenging the incumbency. From the outside, a candidate would need to ensure focus on the issue remained constant to maintain momentum.
So here are a few things Karl Rove may have meant instead:
1. Sandy permitted the President to do his job for a few days without being attacked by republicans.
2. Hurricane Sandy forced republican political critics, i.e. NJ Governor Chris Christie as well as many Romney supporters to acknowledge Obama’s good handling of a natural disaster coordination.
3. The storm made it impossible to land a cheap shot at Obama while off the campaign trail tending to Americans in need.
4. Obama received an unfair advantage from a storm.
Rove said, those four days were a stutter for the Romney camp because it was four days that their candidate wasn’t able to be out talking about the economy and slow growth; more so, he missed the opportunity to get his message across. Four days? Sure, We may concede the timing of the storm wasn’t opportune, but what storm that rips up the Atlantic ever is opportune?
The people of Nevada, an electoral battleground state has heard Mitt Romney’s economic plan, his speeches and his tax plan over the last 520 days and they are still not buying. Nevada has the highest unemployment rate in the nation at 11.8%, the highest amount of foreclosures in the entire nation and the worst housing market in the nation, yet the battleground state is highly likely to go once again to Mr. Obama. The state Romney should have won with his economic message has not broke his way yet.
So what would four more days have accomplished in any of the hotly contested races that have polled consistently in favor of Mr. Obama? Not sure. The states affected, Connecticut, New York and New Jersey were going to vote for the President regardless, so no electoral gains there. How it plays out all over the country is another story. Any bump reported from the President’s recent performance may simply fall into the “like-ability” category or overall job approval numbers, but nothing significant within the electoral college.
Obama has enjoyed few days as president without personal attacks from the left. Whatever repellent Hurricane Sandy provided from the attacks of presidential politics may have served as the “refresh” Obama so desperately needed. For a few days, Romney was irrelevant. The candidate who had once pledged during the Republican Primary last year, to hollow out FEMA due to excessive funding for disaster relief, was now being forced to watch his opponent demonstrate in HD the need for government in the lives of those who could look no place else. Once again, forced to walk-back his comments on FEMA, Romney looked out of touch.
So if Rove was insinuating that Obama received a rare reprieve, then I must agree, kinda. Obama, once again got an opportunity to correct the messaging of the Right. he got a chance to be seen at the table in command and became the face of the storm relief. Rahm Emmanuel, Obama’s former White House Chief of Staff and current Mayor of Chicago, once told Obama, “…never let a good disaster go to waste…”, Emmanuel would be proud; Obama milked this one Gangnam style, but what an enormous cost to the heart and soul of Americans rebuilding their lives in an election year. That’s my story and um sticking to it.
Over these next 5 days, Barack Obama and Mitt Romney are going to be making what some have called their “closing arguments”, which leaves me questioning, who’s on trial here? Is it America? Well what did we do wrong? Was it electing Barack Obama in 2008 or was it re-electing George W. Bush in 2004? Is Mr. Romney our double jeopardy clause since he is proposing Bush policies?
I voted for George W. Bush so excuse me, I get to criticize without being accused of being biased. What Mr. Romney is running on IS The Bush Agenda. However what Romney is suggesting is President Bush failed to implement it properly…right. Not that the policies didn’t work or not that Congress got in the way, no, Bush just didn’t do a good job of pushing through his own agenda?
What’s problematic with that theory is, Bush pushed his entire agenda, even those things he could have never won bipartisan support for. After the horrible attacks on our nation, Mr. Bush got everything a republican president could ever dream of…in two life-times. Yet, it crippled the entire system. Every bubble burst; simultaneously.
Mr. Obama has to convince voters he has brought the nation back from the brink, the edge, the cliff or whatever dramatic term you find helpful to describe personal family pain, and then ask those same voters to keep him in Office to ensure we are put back on the straight and narrow…kinda where Clinton left us in 2000.
Where will all this convincing take place? The battleground states of course; Ohio, Virginia, Colorado, New Hampshire, Florida, Wisconsin, and *Ohio. No Ohio was not mentioned twice in error, you’ll see why in a moment. Lets take a look at where the campaigns will be over the final days, beginning today:
1. Ohio (multiple stops)
2. Nw Hampshire
1. New Hampshire
1. New Hampshire
Both men have a few days to tell the country what they will do in the Oval over the next four years. So clearly you could expect them to travel all over the country right? Well, no. The next five days will make you think these guys are running to be the President of the United Battleground States of America.
As you can see, Ohio might be important. Obama makes nearly 5 campaign events in 5 days, while Romney makes only one scheduled, we’ll just keep our eyes on his Sunday schedule because if there is anything added, it had better be Ohio or Florida. Romney desperately needs them both to win. In order to become the President of the United Battlegrounds of America, he has to win the majority of the battleground states with Ohio being that nation’s capital.
With his bolstered, re-energized campaign with the help of Hurricane Sandy and the presidential optics and Mitt Romney’s retooled attacks, the game is once again underway. Down the stretch in the final turn, it is currently neck and neck, way too close to call. FEMA showed its head for Romney’s old words and New Jersey Governor Christie looked the other way and got a ride in Marine One. The politics of devastation-that’s my story and um sticking to it.
Yesterday morning, I took my turn to cast my ballot with today’s numbers pushing the totals over 1.3 million according to the Atlanta Journal Constitution, Atlanta’s major news publication.
What only took an hour to snake through the twisty-turns of voters waiting patiently to cast their ballots. What I did notice was the upbeat energy in the polling place which could almost be felt from the distant parking lot.
“Good-morning!” said one, then another, with a smile and then one with a light wave of the hand; eerily kind in such a bitter partisan race between President Barack Obama and Governor Mitt Romney as they battle for The White House. Random applause continued to breakout in the polling location at word of a new first time voter, how magical.
All of the concerns and worry over Georgia’s voter ID laws were not met with any strain. Well organized, informed poll workers and just a down right Georgia “peachy” day to vote for America.
In one week, when the race has been decided and the cleaning crews begin to clear away the confetti and the streamers, I can only hope the nation will have the same story that I just told of their voting experience.
Soon after, I met up with my favorite server at IHOP who had noticed my “I voted” sticker on my lapel which sparked even more excitement among the staff. When you can find election energy in IHOP, it’s a good election year. That’s my story and um sticking to it!
When the storm, in this case, Hurricane Sandy, and how you respond to it becomes a literal storm the President must navigate in the final days of this election cycle, every photo and interview The White House authorizes for the President is crucial.
There is a political dance, a balance of sorts actually, where the president has show he is in command of his government and not holding campaign events at the time of a crisis or catastrophe. This morning Air Force One returned to Washington, D.C. carrying the President from Orlando, Florida where Obama was scheduled to appear with Bill Clinton. Shortly after arriving in Orlando last night the decision was made to have the President return to The White House. The campaign stop was set keep Florida in play for Obama as Romney had been seen in just about every poll conducted in the last two weeks leading in the state.
The American people are looking for a stable government, above all else politics. Take Virginia, a battleground state, the President is currently up 4% in the latest NBC/ WSJ polls in addition to several others with an average of 3%-4%, but although he would love to campaign through the final stretch, Obama has to be Commander-In-Chief and not the Campaigner-In-Chief.
The Federal Emergency Management Agency or (FEMA) has to show swift and efficient response where needed as well as direct the eastern sea coast to safety. The President uses FEMA to manage the implementation of emergency response around the nation. It would be challenge to explain how the President was fulfilling his constitutional duties aboard the airplane or in the motorcade in-between campaign stops and political attacks.
Endless footage of Obama being presidential is better television commercial Team Obama could ever pay for. Any slam on Romney by the President about “Romnesia”, Obama’s latest attack on his GOP challenger about his latest switch on policy stances where it appears politically prudent will look poorly timed and just down-right distasteful.
And if you are beginning to think Mr. Obama’s job is a difficult one, just think how easy he has it compared to how challenging Mr. Romney’s campaign will be as they attempt to walk on the egg shells of the storm. Try navigating the land mines by politically attacking the President while he is touring states, observing damage, hugging storm victims and fulfilling his sworn duty. Romney has no official role, so you are left to private fundraisers, but even those are potentials for claims of how “Romney is disconnected” while the POTUS is engaged at every level. Just not good optics.
Within 8 days the country will vote for the next president. These campaigns, metaphorically are storms of their own but when you add a literal storm in the wake of all that is going on in the political arena, politics will play a significant role; always has. Whether you think it matters or not, no one believes that to be an honest assessment. George H.W. Bush was found playing golf too often at the height of the recession in 1990-1992; voters punished him for by giving him a permanent retirement. Later, his son George W. Bush was slow to respond to Hurricane Katrina and was pictured from Air Force One flying over from his ranch in Texas back to Washington, Katrina-the worst storm to this nation and displace so many.
The democratic base is a bit worried this will affect the early vote in some areas and in other areas , some states lime Virginia and New Hampshire, both battlegrounds, may be affected with power outages leading up to Election Day. They can’t be viewed at a time like this to be as concerned about election day, but trust me, they are terribly worried. As is Romney, he is hoping this does not affect his standing in many battleground states where he was undoubtedly making advancements in some and leading the president in others.
If you are Romney, you do not want the American voters seeing Obama in President-mode over the next 24-36 hours. Romney and Ryan are trying to keep a low profile for the sake of the attack game, but also prevent from disappearing from the national stage altogether. Romney cant cede the national concerns to Obama, but you dont want to appear on television looking like you are politicizing the storm for personal gain.
If I am Romney, you don’t want him [Obama] hogging the local and cable news and you definitely don’t want the local tv programming interrupted by news outlets with endless hours of weather forecasts government agencies, both state and local looking to your challenger, the incumbent for direction.
This is big government at work. For all those conservatives who think cutting FEMA’s budget or returning these dollars to the states to handle their on natural disasters, lets see how this works for you? Many state officials push their chests out and say they would do their best to take care of their own states, relying less on government; resisting the temptation to notify their rich Uncle Sam. Every Governor who said they wouldn’t, always do, as they should.
The safety of Americans is the most important thing for any elected official. The official response should never be attacked, the role of government should be the security of its people. However, navigating through the political fallout if the response is ineffective is another story entirely. That’s my story and um sticking to it.