Unforced Errors Are Sinking Obama
This time, the president's flubs and his campaign's crassness matter.
July 5, 2012 - 12:28 am
President Barack Obama’s gaffes, tone-deaf statements, and inadvertent betrayals of his elitist true beliefs now arrive with such frequency that they leave one wondering if he’s deliberately trying to lose — until one recalls that he was the same way four years ago.
By May 2008, Michelle Malkin already had a mountain of evidence, which she acknowledged was only a sample, that when away from his teleprompter, this alleged super-smarty is in reality a walking, talking “perpetual gaffe machine.” Her itemization included his reference to the country’s “57 states” and his description of Arkansas as being “in the middle” of Kentucky and Obama’s home state of Illinois. Later in that year’s campaign, we were treated to a stumbling, bumbling candidate describing asthmatics as needing ”breathalyzers” and “inhalators” and having the country’s energy problems solved if only drivers would properly inflate their tires.
Tin-eared statements which would certainly have kept any Republican or conservative and almost any other Democrat from winning the presidency included but certainly weren’t limited to how he would want to handle a daughter’s unplanned pregnancy (“if they make a mistake, I don’t want them punished with a baby”), gun control (“even if I want to take them away, I don’t have the votes in Congress”), and energy policy (“if somebody wants to build a coal-powered plant, they can. It’s just that it will bankrupt them”). Just a few of the betrayals of his true beliefs and insufferable elitism included stubborn support of his fiercely racist pastor of nearly two decades until it became obviously untenable, his characterization of rural Pennsylvanians and Midwesterners as “cling(ing) to guns or religion or antipathy to people who aren’t like them,” and of course his “spread the wealth around” statement to Joe the Plumber.
None of this prevented Obama from winning the presidency four years ago, for four reasons. First, his opponent was so determined to play nice that he squandered repeated opportunities to pounce. Second, a determined lapdog press covered up, downplayed, and excused the candidate’s every move. Third, much of the country was completely convinced that the recession was entirely the fault of George W. Bush and Republicans. (I have previously demonstrated that the recession really owed its severity if not its very existence to Democratic Party-driven housing policies, hundreds of billions of dollars of mortgage-backed securities fraud at “government-sponsored enterprises” run by Democrat cronies, and relentless 2008 campaign threats by Democrats from Obama on down of severe tax increases and environmental tyranny upon their triumph.) Finally, the Obama campaign ran a deliberately non-specific, false biography-inspired campaign of hope, change, and hero worship while conducting an under-the-radar and arguably criminal campaign contributions enterprise which brought in untold millions in untraceable money, much of it likely from foreign sources.
This time around, Obama has an inescapable, virtually across-the-board record of dismal performance. Despite that, it seems that this might be his election to lose if it weren’t for the fact that the gaffes and blunders keep coming, both from the incumbent himself and his once thought unstoppable campaign handlers. Additionally and ominously for Team Obama, either more people are paying attention, or his opposition is getting a lot better at messaging — or both.
When it’s over, should he lose, it’s likely that historians will identify Obama’s “the private sector is doing just fine” assertion as the moment it all started to come undone. Two weeks after his ignorant utterance, a YouGov.com poll of “citizens” (i.e., not even of registered or likely voters) showed that 47% of Americans not only knew about it, but could also recite it. A liberal poli sci prof tried to frame this result as evidence that it really didn’t matter. Who does he think he was kidding? In a country where at most 20% can be described as following the news and current events closely, 47% penetration in two weeks is astonishingly high. Mitt Romney, his campaign, and the Republican Party have over four months left to get to most of the other 53%. As long as they continue their current aggressive posture, they probably will.
Obama’s campaign, supposedly run by the greatest political strategists ever to walk the earth, is adding to the pile with especially galling offense.
Did you know that if you’re getting married, graduating, or celebrating some other important life event, you can sign up at the Obama campaign’s “Event Registry” and ask those who were planning to buy you congratulatory gifts to instead send the money to Dear Leader’s reelection campaign? Has there even been a more breathtakingly crass campaign fundraising tactic?
Last week, the financially struggling, Democrat-dominated town of Durham, New Hampshire, asked the Obama campaign to reimburse it for the $20,000 in extra expenses it anticipated running up during an impending campaign stop. That’s probably far less than the cost of one of the White House’s frequent opulent parties. Despite the fact that the Granite State is sure to be hotly contested, and that a few hundred alienated former supporters might end up being the difference between winning and losing, the campaign refused. An anonymous donor defused the situation; memories will surely linger.
The press still carries Obama’s water. Last week, the Associated Press, aka the Administration’s Press, tried to portray Romney as the one haunted by gaffes. But if that’s the case, why are media members desperately fabricating them, as NBC’s Andrea Mitchell unapologetically did with a misleadingly edited portrayal of Romney’s visit to a Wawa sandwich shop designed to make him look out of touch? An attendee who was recording exposed Mitchell’s dishonesty, showing yet again that the fourth estate has, thank goodness, lost presumptively exclusive control of the narrative. Moreover, media apparatchiks are learning that covering for a candidate is far easier than it is for an incumbent.
Unforced errors, unmistakable signs of desperation (which seems to have grown since last Thursday’s outrageous ObamaCare ruling at the Supreme Court), and transparently counterproductive pandering betray Team Obama’s near panic about the president’s reelection prospects. May they therefore continue.