People who pay close attention to politics often like the aspect of it that is a competition. Americans love sports and whether you are liberal, conservative, or somewhere in between, there is a certain aspect of the whole thing that is like a sport. Everyone wants to win.
Whether you hate Karl Rove or not, an objective observer should have noticed that, the man is a political genus. After all, he played a vital role in electing George W. Bush president.
Karl Rove was spot on the other day in his Wall Street Journal opinion piece about the race between Mitt Romney and President Obama.
The Obama administration will “distort beyond recognition his opponent's arguments” and he hit the nail right on the head when he said, “No honest differences are possible with Mr. Obama.”
But that is the game right?
Well it has been for years, and it will be for years. Both Parties are guilty of it. The Democrats voted for the war in Iraq by overwhelming numbers, and they had the same intelligence that the Republicans had. Bill Clinton spent years saying the same things that Bush said about Saddam Hussein. But when the war went south, the Democrats were quick to use it for political gain.
Therefore, politics can sometimes be a vicious thing. Rove is one of the best at this. We can expect President Obama and his team in Chicago to implement a different strategy in this election than the hope and change strategy that was used in 2008. To understand why they will not use the same strategy that was so successful last time, one only has to understand that no candidate can win offering mea culpa.
President Obama cannot run on his record alone, because he understands that most people have not deemed his presidency a success.
Mitt Romney can fight the attacks from Chicago. Jay Cost over at the Weekly Standard has already identified how to do it. Just use what Ronald Reagan said in his closing statement in the October 1980 debate:
"Next Tuesday all of you will go to the polls; you'll stand there in the polling place and make a decision. I think when you make that decision, it might be well if you would ask yourself, are you better off than you were 4 years ago? Is it easier for you to go and buy things in the stores than it was 4 years ago? Is there more or less unemployment in the country than there was 4 years ago? Is America as respected throughout the world as it was? Do you feel that our security is as safe, that we're as strong as we were 4 years ago? And if you answer all of those questions yes, why then, I think your choice is very obvious as to who you'll vote for. If you don't agree, if you don't think that this course that we've been on for the last 4 years is what you would like to see us follow for the next 4, then I could suggest another choice that you have."
This is why team Obama is trying to use Reagan against the Republican nominee, because they are fully aware of the power of Reagan's 1980 argument.
This is exactly why we will not see much hope coming from the current occupant of the White House. For the last two years, we have listened to the White House set up its reelection campaign. The Obama administration hopes to point the voter’s malcontent with their government at the Republican Nominee.
Expect a hellacious campaign if poll numbers have not shifted decidedly back into Obama’s favor by mid-September. The truculent talking points will be used as a club in the hopes of making the Republican nominee look to horrible to fathom as president. They did this to Sarah Palin, with the help of a few ill-timed gaffes by the former Alaskan Governor.
But this is likely not going to work, because the average voter does not want to hear about a fictionist war on woman, or a useless new tax on millionaires that will generate less the one 1% of the debt . Maybe they will call it the 1% from the 1%. People do not hate rich people; they hate not having a job. They hope the rich people will create more of them. The MSM will suddenly feel the need to report how Romney has flip flopped on major issues, but that will not bother people more than watching their local mom and pop stores closing shop.
Recently Romney has overtaken Obama in a few polls and this in the mist of the so-called war on woman. Romney can win this, depending on whether he can come out with a compelling vision that people can get behind. Romney is not in position to win because he has run an effective campaign, because he has not. It is because over the past few weeks the Democrats have made it clear that they are going with the slash and burn campaign, and they have misjudged the mood of the electorate.
It is the economy stupid, Obama promised to fix it, and in that, he has not kept his promise. People are just looking for an excuse to believe that the economy can get better, and that is why Romney is in a good position right now; now we will have to wait to see if he can take advantage of this opportunity that has come sooner than most everybody thought it would.