The electorate has spoken. Mr. Obama has been re-elected, but in winning his campaign has set back any hope of civility ever returning to Presidential politics. No matter one’s political views, no one can deny that Mr. Romney is a thoroughly decent man, as could be seen in the graciousness of his concession speech. In his campaign, he persistently attacked the policies of the President, but never the man. He lost. Mr. Obama constantly attacked the character of Mr. Romney, but never his record. He won. It was a victory for Chicago-style politics, in particular for David Axelrod’s campaign ruthlessness. The persistent blaming of George Bush for today’s economic woes worked in that exit surveys showed 53% of the public blamed Mr. Bush for today’s economy, while 38% blamed Mr. Obama. Mr. Axelrod’s strategy was a reaffirmation of Joseph Goebels’ dictum: if you repeat a lie often enough, people will come to believe it as truth.
It could be that Mr. Obama will learn humility from his victory. He was, I believe, the first President re-elected with fewer Electoral College votes (303) [Florida is still undecided] than he received when elected for his first term (365.) The nation remains divided. In losing, Mr. Romney garnered 48% of the popular vote to Mr. Obama’s 50%. It is possible that now Mr. Obama may move toward the center and actually work toward a “Grand Bargain” with John Boehner, who continues as Speaker of the House. Perhaps the President will actually heed his deficit reduction commission and attempt to put our finances in order. Mr. Obama was inclusive in his acceptance speech, but so had he been four years ago.
But I wouldn’t hold my breath. These eras of good feelings never last long; Mr. Obama is a Left-wing ideologue. In 2009, shortly after being sworn in, Mr. Obama made his position clear when he told Congressman Eric Cantor of Virginia. “I won. You lost.” Sixty percent of Americans believe that we are headed in the wrong direction. Forty-three million are on food stamps. Poverty has risen during the past four years, and median income for middle income Americans is lower than it was four years ago, and the number of people working is less than it was four years ago. Above all else, Mr. Obama sees himself as the inheritor to Presidents like Franklin Roosevelt and Lyndon Johnson who greatly expanded the entitlement state.
It was not Mr. Obama’s success on the economy that won him re-election, the unpopularity of Obamacare, nor his bungling of the events, and their aftermath, in Benghazi. Mr. Obama is seen as an historic figure, and people didn’t want to let go of it…
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