I just have one question this morning. Does President Obama read? If he does, there is no way he could miss the fact that he has blown his chance for a second term. Back in January, he told Diane Sawyer:
“I’d rather be a really good one-term president than a mediocre two-term president,”
Sorry Barack, you’re not even going to be a mediocre one-term president. You’re working on being Herbert Hoover II. You’re destroying the country, and a lot of people are waking up to that reality and beginning to ask how on earth we can get rid of you. Some cases in point:
For the Obama presidency, moral collapse has taken on the appearance of craven clockwork, establishing a concentric pattern — doing immense damage to economic security at home while ratcheting up warfare overseas.
By the end of the weekend, a deal was just about wrapped up between the president and Republican congressional leaders to extend the Bush tax cuts for the wealthiest Americans.
On the spin-cycle agenda this month is yet more reframing of the president’s foggy doubletalk about Afghanistan. Strip away the carefully crafted verbiage and the picture is stark — with plans for a huge U.S. war effort in that country for many years to come.
At the end of a year with massive U.S. military escalation in Afghanistan, parallels with the Johnson administration’s unhinged Vietnam War are hard to miss. Conjectures about an inside-the-Democratic-Party challenge to Obama’s re-nomination are now moving from shadowy whispers to open discourse.
Clarence B. Jones, Scholar in Residence, Martin Luther King, Jr. Research and Education Institute at Stanford University (H/T Wonk the Vote) Time to Think the Unthinkable: A Democratic Primary Challenge To Obama’s Reelection You need to read the whole thing, but here’s just a sample:
It is not easy to consider challenging the first African-American to be elected as President of the United States. But, regrettably, I believe that the time has come to do this.
It is time for Progressives to stop “whining” and arguing among themselves about whether President Obama will or will not do this or that. Obama is no different than any other President, nominated by his national party. He was elected with the hard work and 24/7 commitment of persons who believed and enlisted in his campaign for “Hope” and “Change.”
You don’t have to be a rocket scientist nor have a PhD in political science and sociology to see clearly that Obama has abandoned much of the base that elected him. He has done this because he no longer respects, fears or believes those persons who elected him have any alternative, but to accept what he does, whether they like it or not.
It is time for those persons who constituted the “Movement” that enabled Senator Barack Obama to be elected to “break their silence”; to indicate that they no longer will sit on their hands, and only let off verbal steam and ineffective sound and fury, and “hope” for the best.
Let’s stop pretending. Barack Obama is a disaster as a crisis president. He has taken an economic collapse that was the result of Republican ideology and Republican policies, and made it the Democrats’ fault. And the more that he is pummeled, the more he bends over.
So what can we do about it?
the choices boil down to these:
*Let Obama continue to undermine the economy, the real Democratic Party, and the New Deal-Great Society legacy.
*Do a ton of grass roots organizing to put pressure on the administration to change course and in the meantime to back real progressive leaders. The one time in recent memory that something like this worked was in the successful campaign to have Elizabeth Warren appointed interim head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau. The trouble is that the Warren appointment was something of a one-off. Though progressive pressure can produce an occasional decent appointment, it is not capable of compelling Obama to grow a spine.
*Run a progressive candidate against Obama in the 2012 primary. At a recent meeting of the Democracy Alliance, most of whose private donors and trade union backers were big Obama supporters, the two White House emissaries were ripped apart. AFL-CIO president Richard Trumka was severe in his criticism of the White House failure to promote a real jobs and recovery program. Co-panelist Austan Goolsbee appeared weak and ineffectual, like his President.*
Yet if we are to be spared an awful decade, both economically and politically, either Obama needs to grow a backbone; or some other Democrat could well challenge him in 2012. Either course will require the progressive community to stop crying in our beer and to get out and organize.
Politics Daily: Dan Rather is predicting a primary challenge to Obama.
Former “CBS Evening News” anchor Dan Rather is predicting that if the Bush tax cuts are extended for two years (as now appears likely) President Obama will face a tough primary challenge from the left.
Appearing on MSNBC’s “Jansing & Company,” Rather said:
“This is a political nightmare for Barack Obama as president. The more-left portion of his party hates this with a passion. And politically, within his own party, if this goes through, Barack Obama will be in a position to have his shirttail on fire, his back to the wall, and the bill collector at the door. Which is metaphorically a way of saying he’s almost guaranteed — if this goes through — to have a serious challenge in a Democratic primary for president in 2012.”
Rather went on to add that “the perception of [Obama] is that he won’t fight for anything.” He also noted: “Many of the heavy contributors to the Democratic Party are beyond shock about this happening, and are saying to themselves, ‘This guy . . . has about four to six months to turn the perception of him and the party around or we’ve got to start thinking about somebody else in 2012.’ “
Wrong, Dan. We have about two months to find someone to run against this guy now or we’re doomed.
I did find one prominent Democrat who thinks the talk about primarying Obama is a bunch of hooey, good old Ed Rendell.
Outgoing Pennsylvania Gov. Ed Rendell told Salon in an interview this afternoon that he does not think “there’s any chance of a serious contender mounting an effort against the president.”
Rendell offered two reasons for his belief: First, any primary challenge would be “too hard to do — it costs too much money.”
And, second, Rendell believes that Obama has checked off enough boxes on the progressive scorecard to keep any challenge from the left at bay.
“Has he achieved everything that he wanted to achieve — or that [the progressive base] would have wanted him to achieve? No. But given the state of the filibuster rule in the Senate, I think he’s done well in moving the ball forward in a lot of areas, areas he doesn’t get credit for,” Rendell said, rattling off a list of Obama’s accomplishments: not only the healthcare bill, but also the Lilly Ledbetter Fair Pay Act, credit card reform, student loan reform, and the extension of insurance to low-income children in the S-CHIP program.
Hey Ed, what could be more expensive than keeping Obama? He’s already given away the store. God only know what he’ll cave on next. The country is going down the tubes and you want to keep this tool in office?