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Obama’s attempts to steer Campaign 2012 away from his economic failures

By Capitol Hill Blue
June 19, 2012

President Obama campaigns in North Carolina (REUTERS/Jim Young)

Some see President Barack Obama’s recent declarations on immigration and gay marriage as bold political steps by an incumbent whose record of leadership is, at best, spotty.

Others see such ploys as risky business in a political environment where strong stances polarize voters both for and against a candidate.

But Obama is trying anything — we say again “anything” — to divert attention in this year’s election away from a stagnant economy that could easily end his presidency at one term.

Many Democrats admit the economy is Obama’s biggest albatross in his bid to remain in the White House for another four years. It doesn’t matter if presumptive GOP nominee Mitt Romney can come up with an economic plan that sells to voters or not.  Polls show widespread dissatisfaction with Obama’s lackluster record on economic issues and doubt that he can solve the nation’s fiscal ills and jobless woes.

So it makes sense to try and divert attention away from the economy and towards issues that force Romney to stand by the right-wing issues of his party — a strong stand against same-sex marriages and an attitude towards immigration that alienates the rapidly-growing block of Hispanic voters.

Risky strategy or deft political move?

We will find out in November.

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9 Responses to Obama’s attempts to steer Campaign 2012 away from his economic failures

  1. Rick

    June 19, 2012 at 8:52 am

    What economic problems? It’s all the fault of Bush, or Hoover or McKinley.

  2. Sandy Price

    June 19, 2012 at 10:38 am

    I had 2 6th graders share the pool with me yesterday. It was 114 degrees and yet it was possible to have a pretty good conversation with these two grandkids who were cousins floating around on their “noodles.”

    They both believed that Obama broke all his promises that got hit elected 3 years ago. How interesting that they understood this predicament. I explained the system of the divisions of government and how they had to work as a team to accomplish anything. It is like the teamwork found on the football field. If there is no receiver, there can be no touchdown from the passer.

    I realized they were giving me the opinions of their family members and I asked if they thought their disapproval had anything to do with his color. They thought about it and said “No, I don’t think so” which means the family is aware of the inpression they make with their kids and grandkids.

    I hope that something I said would impress them to look a little deeper in anyone’s actions.

    I’m off to my arthritis therapy class.

    • tabonsell

      June 19, 2012 at 5:34 pm

      I see on the chart you linked to North Dakota has the lowest unemployment rate in the nation at 3%.

      That is significant because Ellen Brown keeps harping on North Dakota being the only state in the union that has a state-owned commercial bank and that bank kept that state out of the economic hardships the rest of the nation experienced.

      By the way, such a bank is socialism.

  3. tabonsell

    June 19, 2012 at 5:26 pm

    And what economic failures are there? And how could things get better without the cooperation of a Congress that seems hell-bent on causing real failure?

    We could have the economy that lost 5.1% of its value in the last year of Buffoon Bush’s reign of error as opposed to the 2-3% growth we now have.

    We could have the 800,000 jobs lost a month at the end Buffoon’s reign as opposed to the job gains each month for the past two years.

    Figure that with population growth alone, the economy would have added about 12 million jobs during Buffoon’s eight years. Now factor in the 8 million jobs destoyed by Buffoon’s Great Recession and we had as much as 20 million jobs not existing just because of Buffoon. With 4-5 million jobs added since Buffoon went away and we have some people claiming that is “failure.”

    So please enlighten us on how Obama could have done any better without any form of congressional cooperation.

    You want real economic failure, just look at the past three GOP administrations.

    A word of caution. Ronald Reagan had a degree in economics and Buffoon has a masters degree in business administration and they compiled some of the worst economic records in history, beaten only by the GOP Harding-Coolidge-Hoover debacle. Now we have businessman in Romney who wants to give this trickle down theory a fourth go-round after monumental failures the first three times it was used.

  4. Lillibet Hunt

    June 20, 2012 at 10:05 am

    Tabonsell, you made some sound points. Add to that, the Federal Reserve which is neither federal nor a reserve, has upon its record of past performance the distinction of having perpetuated the 1930s Depression, and its recent policies also continuing the great Depression of 2001 to present.

    Yes, I do date it to 2001 when revenue streams were cut, war expenditures erupted and grew like Topsy, and doubling the size of the Federal Government added debt to debt to debt.

    North Dakota’s bank is not so much socialist as it is a rebuff to the cartel policies of the Federal Reserve where the primary benefit is to the bankers and no handout at the expense of the American people is ignored or rejected. Jefferson stated repeatedly that a national bank in private hands would be the ruin of the nation. Wilson lamented signing the Federal Reserve Act as having brought about the ruin of the currency and economy in perpetuity. Both were, in light of history, correct.

    As for Obama and the do nothing Congress, he has been trapped by obstinacy doubled down upon him. Yet, in addition to the economy, he also has lots of other problems that he brought upon himself through failing to make it abundantly clear that his intentions were to follow through on his campaign promises, then painting Congress as obstreperous, malign, and overly partisan at the expense of good policies for the US. He failed to make clear that policies that benefit only the few at the expense of the many, or at the expense of the nation would be rejected by making many additional errors of statesmanship.

    Politics is not just the big plans like health care. It is a thousand little decisions that either promote Constitutional government or that promotes special interests. People are wising up, as we have seen through many protests. Sadly, politicians seem to think status quo gridlock is still a good governmental model.

    Electing either Romney or Obama is a vote for our own ongoing frustration and diminishment in the community of world nations.

    • tabonsell

      June 20, 2012 at 2:46 pm

      I trace the beginning of our economic problems to 1981 when Ronald Reagan introduced “voodoo” trickle-down economics and the American public bought it wholesale after repeatedly being warned of its nonsense. In 1984, the American public was told the course needed to be reversed and a couple of dollars in taxes would do the trick. The American lemmings overwhelmingly rejected that solution. The 2001 actions were only the coup de grace on our economy bought on by idiotic policy. And now the American public whines about what it repeatedly voted for.

      Incidentally, Jimmy Carter had a much better economic record than Reagan and both Bushes. Under Carter more than 10 million new jobs were added to the economy. In the 12 years of Reaganomics (3 terms) about 18 million new jobs were added. The 10 million in one term is 67% better that the 6 million per term under Reagan-Bush. Carter had the national debt as a percentage of the GDP at 32.5%, the lowest since WWII. Reagan-Bush raised that to more than 68%. Carter saw poverty rate at 11.4%: Reagan-Bush raised it to 15.1%. Carter put human rights and social justice at the heart of his foreign policy. Reagan included death squads and mass murder in his foreign policy. Carter started a search for alternative sources of energy. Reagan killed the program. So when you spend $10 to $12 a gallon of gasoline, thank dear Ronnie Reagan for that.

      The “Reagan Miracle” never happened. Cons claim his policies doubled tax revenues. Not true. In the 12 years of Reaganomics tax collection rose 82% from $599 billion to $1,090 billion. During the same time, population increased 12% and inflation was up about 70%: 70 and 12 equal 82 so it is evident Reaganomics didn’t add a cent to tax revenue. All we got out of Reaganomics were major tax cuts for the aristocracy, major tax increases for the working middle class, a deficit that was out of control and debt being piled on debt day after day after day.

      Our founders designed a system of government that made it difficult to enact onerous laws. That was purposely done as a protection against overzealous government. They just didn’t anticipate the hatred of today. Early campaigning was dirty, governing was not.

      There are no other choices but Obama and Romney. We can go with Obama, who accepts minor molasses-like progress and who seems content to nibble around the edges of a corrupt system without tying the reform that system, or we can go with Romney, who wants a fourth go-round with Voodoo trickle-down nonsense of tax cuts for the aristocracy and corporations running wild without any adult supervision.

  5. TorrieT

    June 20, 2012 at 10:02 pm

    It seems Obama has become a failure in every way.

    His message of HOPE and CHANGE leaves many of us HOPING for CHANGE, a different president.

    • Rick

      June 23, 2012 at 9:06 am

      One thing I learned from investing is not to hold onto a loser too long while you wait for the “it will turn around.” Doesn’t happen that often.

      Right now the POTUS is a bad investment. He’d be a “sell” or “avoid” at this juncture.