Utne Blogs > Politics

One and Done?

by David Doody


Tags: Barack Obama, President Obama, Ronald Reagan, reelection, 2012 election, 2012, economy, unemployment, debt ceiling, Republicans, Democrats, economics, politics, The American Prospect, David Doody,

Jobless-men-Wall-Street 

Andy Serwer has some bad news for Barack Obama supporters out there: The economy’s not going to heal enough in the next year for him to ride a wave of recovery back into the White House the way Ronald Reagan did in 1984. “Reagan won re-election in a landslide, telling voters that it was ‘morning in America,’” Sewer writes at The American Prospect. “Unfortunately for President Barack Obama, the American economy has been stuck at midnight for years.”

Many factors are at play here. The recession was worse than predicted, so the economic stimulus didn’t do enough, and now we have a Congress that is doing absolutely nothing about the jobs crisis in the country, but are instead bickering about things that for previous presidents went unquestioned. Serwer points out that many of the cuts in the debt ceiling deal will come down the road and will therefore not affect the Obama reelection campaign, but the deal, according to economist Chad Stone, “is a modest hit to GDP in an economy that’s already facing substantial headwinds,” and therefore is certainly not going to help matters.

Barring a surprise uptick in the economy in the final months leading up to the 2012 election, the outlook, in Serwer’s view, looks pretty grim for the Obama camp:

Even assuming Republican intransigence and obstruction have given Obama the most challenging political landscape ever for a Democratic president, what matters is whether voters feel like he did what he was elected to do: Bring the American economy back from the brink.

Though I, like many out there, am not so keen on many of the decisions Obama has made in office, I can’t imagine some of the alternatives. Honestly, Serwer’s bleak article scares the hell out of me.

Source: The American Prospect 

Image by Mike Licht, licensed under Creative Commons 

keith keller
8/8/2011 7:59:43 AM

I voted for Obama but will only vote for him again if he is the lesser of two evils! He did get us out of a terrible recession as best he could...but squandered so much time/energy on healthcare insurance instead of on our #1priority: jobs! He got us more deeply involved in a win-less war which is the big elephant in the room dragging down our economy and spent millions on missiles in Libya. While he may be a bright fellow and good speaker, he's not a leader. he's wasted time appeasing instead of leading; and is not following his principles. Where is the hope and change? ...and where is the support from his fellow Democrats? You shouldn't try to reduce the deficit during a Recession and give tax breaks to the wealthiest Americans while bailing our Wall St if you want to save what made us great: the Middle Class, hardworking, tax paying American!


steve eatenson
8/5/2011 10:59:04 AM

Obama is smarter than most if not all the presidents we've had over the last 40-years or so. Yes, smarter than the Christian Fundamentalists, the war mongers, (note, he hasn't gotten us into any new wars and is trying to get us out of the ones he didn't start), the biggots that slander him all over the internet. I have great hope his wisdom and good intentions will win over enough hearts to give him more time to struggle with The Great Stupid that tries to hold him back.


rodeen
8/4/2011 3:12:51 PM

I think this outcome was fairly obvious during the last election. I dont subscribe to a party but being a radical fundamentalist Christian I am forced to normally vote for republicans. It was apparent that Obama would win but the economy had him in a no win situation from the get go. He could do nothing and the economy would tank and he would be blamed for doing nothing. Or he could spend trillions of dollars the economy would at best remain crappy and he would be blamed for spending trillions of dollars and nothing happening. All the same I am glad he will be dismissed before he can do much more damage. I am still not convinced however that he does not have time left to drive america over the cliff. I hope that my Chinese handlers are nice to me.