The polling numbers indicate the rock star status of President Obama has almost completely vanished. I have friends----probably many more than I know or I’d like to admit---who actually voted for Obama. Interestingly, I’ve had several of those friends fess up in the past few months. At that time, they both admitted they had voted for Obama and admitted it was an error they wished they hadn’t made. What happens to these former Obama voters in 2012? Well it’s too early to know….unfortunately memories are much too short.
First, some of you will assume this is Pro-Obama. Let me say I am opposed to Obama’s policies and politics. Tax increases and increasing the size of government are not the answer no matter what the economic conditions happen to be. Obama, his administration and the people he has surrounded himself with are true believers in hard left leaning viewpoints. In their mind government and government programs are the answer. The free market, and those of us attempting to create in the private sector, could not possibly provide services in a way that a government program is capable of doing. Obama believes this, and that can’t be described as anything but his political principles.
Look at it this way, President Obama has been on the wrong side of public opinion on Arizona Immigration and healthcare reform (of course, we regular folk just weren’t sophisticated enough to understand the complexities of healthcare). Both of these stances are political errors to most of us, but, given Obama’s politics, not a surprise. Obama’s recent Ground Zero Mosque comments were the final straw for me, however. They left me scratching my head. There are conflicting reports as to whether he was forced to comment on the situation, but it appears he didn’t have a compelling reason to comment. He, his team, or both obviously wanted to make the statement.
All of us appreciate the support of the 1st Amendment. Read the following words, unfortunately entangled with Obama’s support for the Ground Zero Mosque, “This is America. And our commitment to religious freedom must be unshakeable. The principle that people of all faiths are welcome in this country and that they will not be treated differently by their government is essential to who we are. The writ of the Founders must endure.” Obama was addressing religious freedom and equality and his words are in fact beautifully elegant. It’s unfortunate these comments will never be appreciated because of the context in which they were stated.
It baffles one to think that intelligent political people, the President included, could make the decision to air their beliefs about the Ground Zero Mosque publicly. You could go on as to the reasons why the Mosque shouldn’t be built near Ground Zero, but very simply, a large majority of the families and friends who lost loved ones are completely against a Mosque being located near the site. Enough said for me, the sensitivities of those affected most should prevail. Surely someone said, “Mr. President, I don’t think we should go here. If nothing else you speaking out about this could hurt a Democrat in an election this Fall.” Obviously, this didn’t occur.
Let’s assess the options. Obama didn’t think about it or no one within his inner circle mentioned how sensitive this subject might be to many Americans---Politically Inept!!! Obama and his team recognized the potential political fallout and didn’t care---wrong, but Incredibly Principled. Perhaps another more politically sinister answer lurks. Let’s face it, the economy may or may not be better by 2012. No question, the Republicans may take back the House and possibly could take back the Senate in the November mid-term elections. As much as we hope the Republicans will sweep, neither of those are guaranteed. So consider this: perhaps the view of the Obama team is that they have a much better chance of winning re-election in 2012 if they can create legislative gridlock because the Republicans control one or more Chambers of the legislature. Additionally, it would be very nice not to have to see himself next to Nancy Pelosi in every Republican presidential ad in 2012.
Perhaps we’ll not know the real answer, but one guarantee is a large majority of the moderate folks who have now disavowed their original support for Obama I mentioned earlier will not remember the Ground Zero Mosque gaffe in 26 months during the media-created Obama the Rock Star 2.0 in 2012.
Posted by: Ross Vogel