Archive for Monday, September 5, 2011

Obama campaign faces sour economic climate

September 5, 2011


— President Barack Obama faces a long re-election campaign having all but given up on the economy rebounding in any meaningful way before November 2012. His own budget office predicts unemployment will stay at about 9 percent, a frightening number for any president seeking a second term.

Obama’s prospects aren’t entirely grim, however. The GOP, heavily influenced by the tea party, may nominate someone so deeply flawed or right-leaning that, Democrats hope, Obama can persuade Americans to give him a second chance rather than risk the alternative.

Democrats say the man who ran on hope and change in 2008 will have to claw his way toward a second term with a sharply negative campaign.

The strengths and weaknesses of his prospects seem clear.

Next year’s unemployment rate is likely to be the highest in a presidential election since 1940. But the leading Republican contenders have denigrated Social Security, switched positions on critical issues and done other things that might make them ripe targets for Obama’s well-funded campaign.

Democratic strategist Doug Hattaway says GOP candidates, including Texas Gov. Rick Perry and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney, may turn off independent voters with their embrace of tea party stands on taxes, spending and program cuts.

Obama “should lump them all together and make them answer for their slash-and-burn politics,” said Hattaway, a former top aide to Hillary Rodham Clinton, Obama’s rival for the 2008 Democratic presidential nomination.

To do so, Hattaway said, Obama must link the candidates to congressional Republicans, blamed by Democrats for the nation’s stalled job growth and recent downgrade of U.S. creditworthiness.

Making the connection might not prove easy.

Obama’s potential challengers have avoided getting dragged into details of the bitter Capitol Hill fights over deficit spending. At least for now, they can lob criticisms at the president while offering few specific, measurable alternatives.

“President Obama oversaw an economy that created zero jobs last month, and that is unacceptable,” Romney said Friday.

But the influence of the tea party and other conservative groups may give Obama some openings, by pushing the GOP field so far to the right that the candidates risk alienating vital independent voters.


Ron Holzwarth 6 years, 4 months ago

That appears to be an oversight by Mr. Charles Babington. This would not be the first time a factual error has appeared in an Associated Press article.

Although, Mr. Charles Babington might think Ron Paul has no chance of winning, and therefore not worthy of mentioning.

A clip: On May 13, 2011, he (Ron Paul) announced formally that he would campaign again during 2012 for the Republican presidential nomination. On July 12, 2011, Paul announced that he would not seek another term in Congress in order to concentrate on his presidential bid.

Bob Forer 6 years, 4 months ago

Obama has lost the enthusiastic support of many due to his milquetoast "can't we just get along" compromise approach to politics. Those folks may not contribute like they did in the last cycle. But when push comes to shove, and when faced with the reality of voting for the surviving extremist republican wingnut nominee, those voters will still end up voting democrat. The only chance the repubs have is to nominate a moderate who offers some kind of program to deal with the economy. But that ain't gonna happen. Result: Obama wins easily.

Bob Forer 6 years, 4 months ago

Now if somebody like Bloomberg throws his name in the hat, and happens to win the nomination, its a whole new ball game, and Obama stands a good chance of losing. But the odds of that happening are slim. The republican party is too full of crazies to nominate a rational, intelligent and sensible politician who would appeal to independent and swing voters. .

classclown 6 years, 4 months ago

Maybe the democrats should nominate someone else.

Bob Forer 6 years, 4 months ago

That ain't gonna happen, either. And it would be unprecedented.

classclown 6 years, 4 months ago

I didn't say that it WOULD happen, just maybe it SHOULD. Unprecedented or not.

tbaker 6 years, 4 months ago

I do not believe Mr. Obama will be re-elected if the economy does not significantly improve before the next election. Since he refuses to abandon his grow government / spend-money we-do-not-have solution to our economic problems, he and his administration will continue on this path and make things even work. There are plenty of examples this approach doesn't work, and they will be turned into campaign commercials.

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