We are developing the social individualist meta-context for the future. From the very serious to the extremely frivolous... lets see what is on the mind of the Samizdata people.

Samizdata, derived from Samizdat /n. - a system of clandestine publication of banned literature in the USSR [Russ.,= self-publishing house]

Frank J on Obama’s re-election chances

If you only go to IMAO occasionally (like me), or even not at all, then allow me to pass on a recent Frank J-ism (if you will pardon the expression) which made me smile if not laugh out loud, from here:

And the thing is, maybe the economy is technically turned around and very slowly starting to go in the right direction, it’s just does Obama not expect us to not notice how far he went off course before finally getting things around? It’s like we’re driving from Newark to New York, and we’re constantly yelling at Obama, “Turn around! You’re going the wrong way!” And eventually we’re in Los Angeles, right at the shore where we can’t go any further off course, and Obama finally says, “I guess I better turn around.” And then he expects us to buy him lunch for making the smart move of turning things around. And we’re like, “Man, we were so much better off when we were back stuck in that ditch.”

I think a negative maybe got wrongly doubled sowhere near the beginning of that, but you get the point.

My approximate understanding of voters is that they do indeed vote about the immediate future, rather than reward or punish politicians for their past deeds or misdeeds, the most famous case being how British voters booted out Churchill in 1945, despite his triumphant war leadership, but because of his presumed inability to win the peace. He won in 1951 not because of his heroic past, but because of what he was then saying: set the people free.

Obama is now tanking in the polls because the US economy is now experienced as bad. If it feels like the US economy is heading in the right direction come election day, Obama could indeed win. I could go on, but prefer to leave commenters who actually live in the USA, like Paul Marks, to take that further, if they care to. I will only say that I vividly recall being told, by a visiting American at the time when President Bill Clinton was riding very low in the polls during his first term, that he had zero chance of winning again. But, he did.

Also, I was amazed by this FJ revelation:

It’s time to admit the truth: I’m not a bland American male, but really a gay girl living in Syria.

I did not know that.

So, she probably doesn’t know that much about Obama’s re-election chances either.

Tweet about this on TwitterShare on FacebookShare on TumblrShare on RedditShare on Google+Share on VKEmail this to someone

49 comments to Frank J on Obama’s re-election chances

  • One shouldn’t underestimate the ability of the Republican Party to nominate someone astoundingly useless, too. That could easily aid Obama’s re-election chances as well.

  • Michael gets the cigar. That is exactly my thoughts.

    PS Paul Marks doesn’t live in the USA.

  • John B

    Perhaps she’s just happy?

    Yes. All that has to be done is to introduce a “happy” and los electoratos will go wagging its collective tale to destruction.

    Somehow Reagan got in, so one can but hope?

  • PaulH

    I find the statement “does Obama not expect us to not notice how far he went off course” a little puzzling. At the time Obama came to power the economy was heading down the toilet, and he continued with that course. So the problem was that he stayed on course, rather than veering off it (in whatever way we might have preferred).

  • Dom

    “I think a negative maybe got wrongly doubled sowhere near the beginning of that …”

    Did me get lost in the sowhere?

  • john

    I’m a midwestern American and I say Michael has it right, just too mild. My prediction (but not desire) is that barring extreme events (like if he were to be very ill or resign) Obama is going to win it walking away with record low turnout.

    The main reason is that most Americans see voting decisions as dichotomy between D and R, and the Republicans have got nothing… nobody. Aside from *maybe* Ms. Rice, I can’t even see anybody who’s not running who would make a good candidate.

    The usual protest vote is to stay home in droves.

  • John B

    The politicians are just a cork floating on an elite consensus. But at least the Republican had some aspects of sanity.

    During Reagan’s time there was quite a large amount of common sense but the elite consensus slowly tore that down (as happened with the sane parts of Thatcher’s agenda) until by the time Bush senior came along there was not too much that was not under the influence of the collectivist/elitist agenda.
    George W tried to make some forays into sanity but I almost think he did not realise what he was dealing with. That the powers-that-be are not interested in the welfare of the people.

    Anyway, after he had exposed himself to the destruction of the Iraq war, they finally pulled him up short with the November 2007 NIE on Iran. (That it had abandoned nuclear plans).
    I still wonder if Rumsfeld was not actually a calculated part of GW’s downfall, or at least of the undermining of the sane agenda.

    With the coming of Obama, the US was not just an unevenly balanced ship, it became totally lopsided with everyone shifting to the port side.
    The ship survived on momentum and the Tea Parties brought in some sanity of despair.

    The conservatives are being thwarted from fixing anything while the collectivists do all in their power to ram the ship onto the rocks. (Cloward-Piven similarities?)

    If somehow someone like Palin could survive the very profound msm hostility and their own shortcomings, perhaps there could be a change of course.

    But with the whole ‘establishment’ in thrall to Keyensian economics (sanitised Ponzi schemes) whoever gets to be next US President, it will perhaps not help too much, anyway?

  • I’m in AZ. If the Republicans follow their previous habit of nominating an Establishment R, whose turn it is perceived to be, then Obama does stand a good chance of being re-elected. The wild card this time around though is the a) TEA Party voters and b) the disintermediation of the MSM by the blogosphere.

    It was the very left-leaning MSM that helped get John McCain nominated last time around, by talking up his “maverick” status and lavishing praise on his willingness to “reach across the aisle” only to turn on him once he had secured the nomination. More and more people are able to see through the prevarications of the MSM thanks to the blogosphere and the TEA Party voters are getting control of the Republican party down at the precinct level. It is also possible now, thanks to the internet, to go around the Republican National Committee and support candidates who aren’t necessarily favored by the establishment. Look at Marco Rubio as an example.

    I think that if Rick Perry decides to jump into the race he could really shake things up and probably couldn’t provide a clearer contrast between the policies being pursued by Obama and the policies he has successfully followed in Texas.

    Just my $0.02 (that and another $3.98 will get you a Starbucks coffee).

  • RRS

    There is a potential “O-beater” out there:

    Tom Coburn (who is among the “not-running”)

    Peggy Noonan, tho’, has called for the best bumper sticker:

    HE MADE IT WORSE

  • RRS

    If you can use bumper stickers in the U K, here’s one for the current “coalition” P M:

    HE’S MAKING IT WORSE

  • Richard Thomas

    Yep, the republican field is dismally dismal with nothing until you get to Ron Paul who honestly doesn’t have a chance.

    McCain wasn’t so much helped by the msm (though I don’t discount it) so much as the primaries where Democrats got to vote for the Republican candidate. Madness and indicative of some very unsane practices in American politics.

  • Daveon

    Obama won’t necessarily win re-election, it’s, as has been observed, far more likely that the Republican Party will gift it to him in a nice box with a pretty ribbon.

  • john at June 22, 2011 01:19 PM has it right: Obama will win again on a swelling tide of apathy. The Republican Party still hasn’t found a new message and still hasn’t distanced itself sufficiently from the Bush years. Obama may win by a smaller margin and with a MUCH smaller turnout than in 2008, but it’s hard to see him losing.

  • Brother J:

    It is also possible now, thanks to the internet, to go around the Republican National Committee and support candidates who aren’t necessarily favored by the establishment. Look at Marco Rubio as an example.

    Can you elaborate?

  • newrouter

    Among the data points from the poll (which has Democrats outnumbering Republicans by 32 percent v. 27 percent):

    Only 30 percent of respondents said they are certain to vote for the president and 36 percent said they definitely won’t.
    Among likely independent voters, only 23 percent said they will back his re-election, while 36 percent said they are sure they will seek out another candidate.
    By a 44 percent to 34 percent margin, Americans say they are worse off than they were when Obama took office.
    More than half of respondents (55 percent) say their children are destined to a lower standard of living.
    Fewer than a quarter of people (23 percent) see signs of improvement in the economy while two-thirds (66 percent) say they believe the country is on the wrong track
    Sixty-one percent either strongly agree or mostly agree that in 2012, Obama will have had his chance and if the economy isn’t substantially better by election day, it will be very hard to vote for him.
    By a margin of 61 percent to 32 percent, Americans disapprove of the job Obama is doing to tackle the budget deficit.
    Fifty-seven percent of respondents disapproved of his efforts to create jobs.
    Fifty-seven percent disapproved of his handling of the economy.

    “As far as the economy goes, I don’t see that he has delivered on the change that he promised,” said Sharon Ortiz, a 38-year-old independent voter from Hampton, Virginia, who supported Obama in 2008. “The jobs that he promised — I haven’t seen it.”

    (Link)

  • Alisa, sure:

    I held out the example of Marco Rubio who was not the favored candidate of the establishment. The sitting governor of FL at the time, Charlie Crist was endorsed by the national party but due to the ability of Rubio as the insurgent candidate backed by the TEA Party set and utilizing the internet for getting the word out about his candidacy via the blogosphere (and AM talk radio to some extent) as well as an inexpensive vehicle for fund raising he was able to ultimately out-fundraise Crist and win the party’s nomination despite the national party’s backing of Crist until it was painfully obvious his position was untenable.

    Another long-odds candidate was Scott Brown of Massachusetts running for the seat vacated by the death of Teddy Kennedy. He was able to raise $1 million by way of an internet “moneybomb” fundraiser in one 24-hour period. The national party wasn’t even going to bother trying to help him because they thought it was impossible to beat the Democrats in Massachusetts.

    There are other examples but the main point of it is that good candidates can beat the odds without the help of an increasingly irrelevant national party and the ability to disintermediate the national party and the MSM is a major contributign factor to that trend.

  • newrouter

    by a visiting American at the time when President Bill Clinton was riding very low in the polls during his first term, that he had zero chance of winning again. But, he did.

    that’s because he had dick morris, now a rethuglican pundit, directing him to the right before the 1996 election.

    US economy is heading in the right direction come election day, Obama could indeed win.

    baracky would have to repudiate everything he’s doing to the economy right now. that ain’t going to happen. this loser is a 1 termer.

  • Thanks, Brother J, that’s encouraging.

  • No problem, Alisa.

    Actually I made one other assertion in my original post that I didn’t provide any backup for:

    …the TEA Party voters are getting control of the Republican party down at the precinct level

    That one I can attest to personally. I had never gotten personally involved in politics until I went to the irst TEA Party event on April 15, 2009, having just turned 50 years old. I started going to meetings and eventually started working to support a TEA Party challenger to our incumbent congressional rep, Jeff Flake who, while pretty good on most issues was getting a bit soft on some others, such as illegal immigration. My guy didn’t beat him though he made a respectable showing at 30% of the primary vote. He subsequently ran for and won the chairmanship of GOP for the largest legislative district in the state (LD22) and recruited me to be a precinct committeeman.

    I’m very open about my strong libertarian streak and apparenty I’m not alone. I’m meeting many more like me at the monthly district meetings. To say that people are a little peeved with the status quo would be to under sell it by rather a lot. I think that over time we will see the old establishment Republicans pushed aside. It isn’t going to happen over night but I think the trend is accelerating.

  • 'Nuke' Gray

    Re Churchill losing the peace- I have often read that people simply preserved their preferences from before the war ‘kick the conservatives out!’, and cast that vote as though the war had not happened. Many were surprised that voting for Labour meant that Churchill was not P.M.!! I suppose the idea of a Government of National Unity was still messing with their minds- Churchill might have seemed to belong to both parties!

  • Roy Lofquist

    I will make some assertions based upon having been an observer of American politics since 1952 and my extensive studies of the subject.

    1. The conventional wisdom is just flat out wrong.

    2. The polls are not only highly inaccurate but are misleading both the Democratic and Republican establishments.

    3. The Republican candidate will win in an historic landslide.

    4. Sarah Palin will handily win the nomination.

    If you disagree on any of these assertions I will be happy to elaborate.

    Roy

  • Well, Churchill was a Liberal before he was a Conservative. But yeah, I’ve read the same line that ‘Nuke’ Gray has: Labour was due for an election victory and the war just interrupted it. The magnitude of the Labour landslide in ’45 was a surprise to everyone, though.

  • Britain suspended democracy during the war, too. (This still utterly astounds me). Voters had not had the opportunity to express their preferences for quite some time, but people still had political views which had probably been lurking under the surface with a certain amount of frustration.

    Both the US and my native Australia held elections as normal during the war, and in both cases the existing party system functioned fairly normally during the war. In both cases, the incumbent was re-elected at the first election after the war. Politics had been fairly normal during the war, so it proceeded fairly normally after the war. In Britain, the abnormality of it made the first election after the war into something bigger.

    This is possibly me constructing narratives out of data, however.

  • John B

    I certainly hope you are correct, Roy.
    That scenario is probably the best hope that America, and the west, has.
    She must just get out there and do it right (be true to the truth).

  • I actually have no trouble foreseeing Roy’s scenario – not that it makes me very happy, mind you: something about Palin makes me feel very uncomfortable, although I can’t really pin down exactly what (I do know though that it is not the things the media are blubbering about).

  • Most of Palin’s solvable problems could be taken care of if she’d just follow the examples of Reagan and Thatcher and take a few voice lessons.

    As for her unsolvable problems, the big media is what it is, and she’s been having a good time “Living in their heads rent free.”

  • PersonFromPorlock

    May I suggest that a sure-loser Republican presidential candidate could stimulate Republican voter turnout, even if not as much as a hot candidate? If the White house looks lost, then the congressional races become that much more important. And the Tea Party Movement is congressionally-oriented, anyway.

  • Roy Lofquist

    Alisa,

    Of course. Nobody can take the savage attacks of the media for two and a half years and not make people uneasy. As you say, it’s not the charges the media is blathering about. But it is. The individual attacks may be ridiculous but they have a cumulative effect that makes people uneasy with her.

    The best anodyne with which to erase the doubts is to examine her record in Alaska. During her rise from PTA mom to governor she ripped apart the Republican establishment.

    As mayor she exposed corruption and got the long term sheriff booted. As a member of the Oil and Gas commission, particularly powerful in Alaska, she disgraced its chairman who was the head of the Alaska Republican Party. Some powerful people went to jail.

    She challenged the sitting Governor, essentially the Godfather of the political machine, and beat the Democrat handily in the general election. As governor she broke the stranglehold that big oil had on the state.

    When she finished she was the most popular Governor in the country with approval ratings above 80%.

    Here is her 45 minute acceptance speech where she tells her story in her own words. You can see why both the Democrat and Republican establishments are shaking in their boots.

    http://www.americanrhetoric.com/speeches/convention2008/sarahpalin2008rnc.htm

    Regards,

    Roy

  • jdm

    I don’t know if I agree with Roy’s prediction about Palin; I personally like her as presidential material, I am just concerned that, as John Zeigler documented, the mainstream media, from which most people get their info, will just build on the base of lies they’ve already in place.

    That said, I just want to make a meta-comment that I’ve noticed that non-lefties, but especially conservatives are, well, “whiny bitches” when it comes to their candidates. No candidate’s good enough; there’s always some huge problem. I think there’s a great selection of candidates encompassing a whole spectrum of candidates with successful backgrounds. I’m not a fan of Huntsman or Romney, but I think circumstances are going to lead things in the near future and I expect them to do the right thing as opposed to what we have now.

  • Roy Lofquist

    jdm,

    As I pointed out, conventional wisdom is flat out wrong in this election.

    The media – The public is getting damned tired of the constant personal attacks, not only on her but anyone who opposes them. She is causing them to beclown themselves – making them a laughingstock. This clip is instructive.

    http://www.mediaite.com/tv/jon-stewart-blasts-media-for-wasting-our-time-with-palin-emails/

    As to why her. The Tea Party Movement came as a complete surprise to everybody. Seemingly appearing everywhere like mushrooms after a spring rain. They are the most powerful political force in the country and their driving passion is to throw the bums. This is evidenced by the crushing victory in the 2010 elections. This was the largest change in alignment in 70 years. But they also took out long standing members of the Republican establishment. They just don’t like Republicans much but realize they have to use that party as their vehicle. They are working assiduously at the precinct level to take over.

    Sarah owns their hearts. She supported their candidates to the max. Primaries are won in large part with plain hard work. Sarah’s army, a powerful one, is ready and eager to lead the charge.

  • Roy: Palin is great on paper, and yet I didn’t like her from the very beginning. But like I said, I can’t really pin it down, so I’ll just leave it at that.

    I agree with jdm: the GOP candidate field is not anywhere as dismal as it is painted by many on our own side.

  • Paul Marks

    I was pulled up by that line as well Nick.

    Perhaps I give the impression that I live in the United States because I watch American television (I find British television very odd) and spend a lot of each day talking to Americans (and have done so for some years now).

    However, if I actually turned up at American airport I suspect things would go rather badly for me (I would guess I am on a few lists).

    Still yes – it is “the economy stupid” (Newsweek. loyal to the Clinton faction of the Democratic party, had that on their cover this week – along with a picture of Bill, supposedly he wrote a lot of the boiler plate inside on how to cure unemployment).

    The economy is going to collapse (that is me – not Newsweek) the only question is when?

    If it happens after November 2012 then Obama is fine – in fact more than fine (because he will intoduce Emergency Rule, with the full support of the media, and of the RINOs and make Congress no longer relevant).

    If it happens before November 2012 (well actually before Labor Day 2012 – because people seem to make up their minds by then and stick, no matter what happens economically).

    Then Obama goes down in flames.

    Of course (if one is really spooky minded) then one believes that the left has a Plan B and even a Plan C.

    Plan B.

    Economy falling apart – Hillary Clinton steps forward to oppose both the failure of Obama and the “extremism” of the Republicans (who ever the Republicans nominate will be denounced as an evil extremist by the media – they most likely already have the attacks written out, with just a blank space where the name of the candidate is going to go).

    Obama steps aside in her favour and she sweeps to victory – to rule as the new Augustus, posing as a saviour of the Republic (even getting rid of some Obama’s Marxists), whist really destroying what is left of it.

    However, given that Newsweek’s value is about one Dollar – it may be that the power of this faction of the Democratic party is limited.

    Plan C.

    Republicans win (because the economy is falling apart) – but then can not cope (because everything is falling apart) and the Republic (and the West) falls.

    Plan C. Strikes me as more likely.

    Who will the Republicans nominate?

    In terms of winning the election – it really does not matter.

    The media (and so on) will attack any Republican candidate as “extreme”, “stupid”, “baby eating” (well perhaps not the last one) and they will be attacked in much the same terms in the comedy shows and the “news” shows.

    Teachers and academics will also teach the student vote that the Republican is a racist (especially if they happen to be black or brown). 300 thousand Dollars for an Ivy League education – when that education is basically just brainwashing (and not even very good brainwashing – there is no style in it).

    The media has been getting more and more hostile since 1956 (the last election for President they covered more or less fairly), each time they go a little bit further.

    2012 will mark (I believe) the “Republicans eat babies – especiallyt black and brown ones” stage, The media know they are going to go bankrupt soon (without government subsdies) so they really have nothing to lose.

    Will people believe all this stuff – that Sarah Palin burns books, that Mitt Romney kidnaps people for Mormon branwashing camps, that Hermon Kane is a member of the KKK, that…..

    Well a lot of people will not.

    But will 51% believe (or half believe) it?

    Yes if the economy is basically O.K.

    No – if the economy is clearly falling apart.

    It is as simple as that.

  • Paul Marks and everyone:

    Saying that Paul lives in the USA was a misfired joke. My apologies. I know very well where he lives, and it is not, physically, the USA.

    It’s the kind of line that would work in a London pub, where we all know that Paul lives over here, but how could anyone know this, who doesn’t actually know it? I had in mind that Paul seems to live virtually in America, and to know more about its political workings than the average American does. Think of it as an attempt to flatter that fell flatter than I had hoped.

    I blame the “sowhere” thing on the accursed France based AZERTY keyboard, which turns ms into ,s. As we all know, correcting AZERTY based errors with an AZERTY can unleash further error.

    I’m home now.

  • Brian, it wasn’t misfired and it didn’t fall flat at all – at least not with the “regulars”. (I trust Nick M. will be soon back to his normal self:-)) Besides, physical-residence relevancy is so pre-21st-century!

  • Kim du Toit

    The reason Clinton was elected in 1992 is spelled
    R-o-s-s-P-e-r-o-t, who split the Republicn vote and allowed Clinton to beat a sitting President who had broken his word to the voters and raised taxes. Clinton was reelected because the Stupid Party (that would be the Republicans, for you Brits) shot themselves in the foot by fielding the weakest candidate in the entire 20th century.

    Different times, now. Now, we have a thing called a “Tea Party” and another thing called the “Internet”. The only way Obama is reelected will be if the Stupid Party nominates another Bob-Dole type, and conservative voters say, “Meh”.

    Even then, my feeling (and it’s just a feeling) is that Obama might barely squeak out a win. With a strong Republican candidate (not Sarah Palin, sadly), Obama won’t win ten states.

    Any student of U.S. politics knows that we tend to swing conservative more than liberal, and most liberal presidents (e.g. Carter) have a way of making the pendulum swing strongly right. Obama’s more liberal than Carter ever was… draw your own conclusions.

  • John B

    Kim, if you can remember all that free lunch on BA flights then you can remember the accepted 1980/1 pre-election wisdom on Reagan, that he was an idiot with nothing worthwhile to say or contribute.

    I think Palin can do it as long as she is not “advised” into compromising reality.

    “Gravitas” and words like that seriously remind me of con men.

    If Palin can just stay true to what she knows, she can get elected because when the people are presented with truth they are capable of recognising it.

    The only lessons she needs is how to stay true when surrounded by lies, deceptions, deceptions within deceptions, the whole con game.

  • Kim du Toit

    John, I agree with all your points, but the critical one is this: Palin’s negatives (in terms of public opinion) are FAR too high for her to be elected. Worse still, her negatives are relatively high among likely Republican voters. She’s just not electable.

    Now, if I’m eventually proved wrong, I’ll not only admit my mistake, I’ll be overjoyed to admit my mistake.

    The Tea Party will be more of a factor next year than Palin, and just because they’re quiescent right now, do not expect them to be so when the campaigns start getting going.

  • Paul Marks

    Understood Brian.

    On Palin….

    What people say here is true (although there are many Tea Party groups – ranging from Tea Party Patriots, which is very sensible, to others that are sometimes guilty of walking into obvious traps).

    The msm managed to turn Palin into a joke/monster to most people.

    But remember a “little” point – the msm did this via LIES.

    Endlessly repeated LIES – both on their comedy shows, and on their news and current affairs shows.

    Now I am not saying that Palin can win – what I am warning about is something else.

    If the msm can do that to Palin – they might well be able to do it to someone else.

    I remember recently seeing a semiporn image of Tim Pawlenty on the Jon Stewart show.

    Of course Pawlenty has never gone in for photographs of that nature – and Jon Stewart would say “it was just a joke – I was making fun of the fact that Pawlenty is so straight laced and boring”.

    But what if Pawlenty was the candidate?

    I think you would see a lot more of this (and other stuff) from the msm – and not just on their “comedy” shows.

    DITTO ANYONE ELSE WHO WAS THE REPUBLICAN CANDIDATE.

    They would find some way to attack – and then LIE AND LIE AND LIE.

    And if called on it – they will say “it is just a joke”, or “it is a parody and satire”.

    And it will not just be the comedy shows – dishonest attacks bleed over into the news and current affairs shows (see the example of Sarah Palin).

    Whilst the msm still have some power (less than it was – but still some power) any Republican candidate faces an uphill battle.

    For the media (and academia – for the schools and universities are under the control of the left) will “monster” them – just as they have done with Sarah Palin.

    Take an example that is happening right now (at least I think it is happening).

    Barack Obama is at least half in favour of a default, he (via his tools) is rejecting any proposal (no matter how moderate) that would avoid it.

    But that is not how things are being presented – either in Britain or the United States.

    According to the conservative British publication the “Spectator” Barack Obama is cutting government spending (“many times more than Cameron is”).

    That is odd – because Barack has not even proposed a budget (he did propose one some months ago – but it was so full of smoke and mirrors that even Democrats laughed at it, and it went away).

    As for the Republicans.

    Both the British and the America media are presenting them as extreme “refusing to raise the debt ceiling” without unaccpetable cuts in government spending (pushing old ladies in wheel chairs off cliffs – and so on).

    So it is a lose/lose.

    If the Republicans accept more and more borrowing (without even a formal promise that spending INCREASES will be reduced in future) their own supporters will turn away from them in disgust.

    And if they do not accept it – if they demand and limit on government spending.

    Then their will be a shut down – and the Treasury (run by Tim G. – a man who should be in prison) will not cut other spending (in order to maintain payments on the debt) – no it will hit payments on the debt.

    Thus putting America into at least temporary “default”.

    And the Republicans get blamed.

    At least get blamed – if people accept the msm presentation.

  • John B

    Lies do evaporate as the non – sense that they are when exposed to the truth. Reality.

    It takes some courage to hang in there. Courage, intelligence and integrity of vision.

    But that is pretty much all it takes, with adequate funding.

  • Laird

    I agree with Kim about Palin: she’s not electable. She can’t “pull a Reagan”; the msm has been relentlessly working on her for the last 3 years, and the cumulative effect of all those lies is overwhelming. The media didn’t like Reagan and cast him as a buffoon, but in those days the media weren’t as vicious or willing to propagate outright lies as they are today. Also, Reagan was personally popular from his Hollywood days.

    Palin doesn’t have that advantage. Yes, she’s very popular in certain quarters, but not enough to overcome the huge negative perception of her everywhere else. I think her role in the 2012 election will be, not so much an “elder statesman”, but an advocate for whoever the Republicans wind up nominating (even if it’s Romney). Her job will be to keep a restive Tea Party inside the tent, at least as far as the presidential election is concerned (she’ll also work for Tea Party candidates in the congressional and gubernatorial elections even against the Republican establishment, as she did in 2010). If successful, she’ll be rewarded with some sort of Cabinet position and continue to build her resume and rehabilitate her public image. And prepare for a run in 2020 (she’ll only be 56 then).

  • Midwesterner

    On the other hand, Laird, Palin has been thoroughly dissected by the media. All of the other candidates are fodder for an October ambush. When the media ambushes Palin for the gazillionth time it will draw a yawn, not a wave of doubts. The swing voters are not Democrats, they are the non-Democrats that stay home for for ambiguous centrist Republican candidates that are not significantly distinguishable from Democrats.

    The next election will ride entirely on getting potential voters out of their chairs and at that, Palin has demonstrated uncontested superiority.

    Try this simple exercise. Imagine two auditoriums next to each other. In one of them are all of the Republican candidates together are debating, rallying, whatever you like. In the other one, Palin is speaking. Who has the biggest gate revenue?

  • Laird

    I don’t dispute that Palin is popular in certain quarters. Or that she would out-draw an auditorium full of mainstream Republican candidates. Irrelevant. It would be filled with her supporters (like a Ron Paul event), not mainstream Republicans, let alone undecideds. The relentless “dissection” (good word) by the media over the last three years has taken its toll: all those “swing voters” hate her. She can best serve her party by staying out of the race and helping to get her fans, who will be sorely disappointed that she’s not in it, to hold their noses and vote for the party standardbearer. She might even be able to sway the nomination, and be a sort of king-maker. Just not a king. Not yet, anyway.

  • Laird

    Smited! That hasn’t happened in a while; I thought the Smitebot was asleep.

    In durance vile here must I wake and weep,
    And all my frowsy couch in sorrow steep.

  • Midwesterner

    I’ve sometimes steeped my frayed couch in coffee. Does that count?

  • Midwesterner

    Laird, EVERY NOMINEE will get the full Palin treatment. Bar none. It will be probably even more successful on others who either don’t have her humor and courage or do have some tiny skeletons that can be cast large with clever lighting. It does not matter who the non Democrat candidate is. They will be slandered and shat upon like nobody but Palin has experienced up to this point.

    Yes, it has taken its toll on her image. But it has given an awful lot of that toll back. It takes time to take it back and the MSM timing will be such that other candidates will not have the opportunity to take theirs back before ballots are cast.

    There is a logical flaw in the school of thought that believes MSM’s past victims are the vulnerable ones. It is their future victims that are by far the most compromisable.

    You are also wrong about the swing voters. Those Palin haters are not swing voters, they are Romney or Paul voters. They are either declared Republicans or, well, Ron Paul voters. The Romney supporters will vote ‘R‘ and the Paul supporters will mostly hold their nose and vote Palin just to see what happens. The true swing voters are the Romney haters. Look at this chart again. The more ‘crazy right wing nutcase‘ the perception of the candidate, the GREATER the turnout of the swing voter. The most ‘viable’ candidates had the absolute worst turnouts. The first term candidates that got the most swing votes were Reagan, Bush 1 (he was tarred with Reagan paint until they discovered he was a centrist) and Bush 2. The absolute worst turnouts were for candidates with the most ‘good president material’ credibility, Ford/76, Bush/92 and Dole/96 who all three got 39.1 million votes – that is probably the Republican base and while it appears stable, it has been shrinking as a share of total voters. Have you forgotten already the merciless ridicule of Reagan’s college, ‘Bedtime for Bonzo’ etc? They successfully destroyed his image in the minds of everybody except for the swing voters. The same attack on Bush 2 ‘proved’ his amazing stupidity to everybody but the faithful and the swing voters. The more they ‘proved’ his stupidity, the more swing votes he got.

    And, one more serious mistake, the Ron Paul/Sarah Palin comparison fails completely. Or more accurately, it proves my point. Go to any swing state, any swing state, and book two arenas, one for Ron Paul and one for Sarah Palin. If Ron Paul can draw 1/10 as many as Sarah Palin I will be impressed.

    Perceived extremism and being the target of the vilest attack campaigns by elitists improve the Republican candidates’ chances. Any other predictions are counterfactual to everything post Watergate. Whether she would make a good president is unclear. It always is until they get there. But what is clear is that she totally pwns the MSM to the point that can’t help themselves and always take the bait she offers them. She also has an ability to fill seats that has been unmatched since Reagan. Speaking strictly from a tactical standpoint, she is the most viable candidate by a wide margin. Frankly, the people that complain about her are people who are likely to either vote a party line ticket, skip the election or vote for Obama anyway. Frankly, they are people that don’t matter all that much on that November Tuesday.

  • Midwesterner

    Kim,

    Two bits of prediction making advice that may encourage you.

    One, when reading polls, ignore everybody who self identifies as either a ‘Republican‘ or ‘Democrat‘. Anybody who actually identifies themselves with a political party will vote that party’s candidate come hell, highwater, Mitt Romney or even Donald Trump. They are the sort of people who belong to parties. They just look for the ‘R‘ or the ‘D‘.

    Two, looking only at the ‘Independents‘, it is pretty safe to ignore almost all of the negative factor. People simply do not get out and vote for the candidate they hate the least. I think if you could scan independent voters who gave her high negatives and looked at who for and how high they gave their positive ratings you would quickly discount them as consequential on Tuesday. Also, pay less attention to positives in the polls and look at who is drawing crowds to events. If you look at that chart I linked, you see that for Republican candidates it is entirely and exclusively a matter of getting people out of their homes.

  • Paul Marks

    Midwesterner.

    There was special factor that helped the left attack Palin – the leftist nature of the State machine in Alaska.

    People think of Alaska as a conservative State and in some ways it is – but not in its court system (and so on).

    The judges are neither elected or freely appointed by Governors – they are selected by an “independent body” (i.e. the left) and a Governor then has to rubber stamp the matter.

    Texas (for example) is rather different.

    Rick Perry would indeed get the full media attack (just as much as Palin), but at least the judges of his home State would not be actively helping the left.

    The most interesting media development recently has been the Jon Huntsman boomlet.

    I listened to his speech announcing his campaign – it was boiler plate (even by the low standard of politicians) all about how wonderful the country is and how everyone had such wonderful freedom (and on and on). Nothing defined, utterly hopeless.

    Yet the man got nice coverage from all the msm – including (for example) a 12 thousand word puff piece in the New York Times (the darling newspaper of Stalin, Mao, Castro….).

    Perhaps Huntsman increasing the budget of Utah 10% a year as Governor (per person – so the number is not distorted by population increase) and saying (way back – in 2009, ancient history) that Obama’s “stimulus” spending was not enough (it should have been a trillion Dollars….) may explain this.

    The plan may be to talk up Huntsman to scare conservatives, so that they accept Mitt Romney.

    “At least he is not Huntsman….”

  • Midwesterner

    Paul, Rick Perry is far more vulnerable to the October ambush than Palin. None of the voters who will swing the outcome (the ones who voted for Bedtime for Bonzo and Chimpy McHaliburton) will be fazed by yet another attack on Palin. But since Perry hasn’t had his first run through the slime cycle, he won’t be able to endure it as well.

    Remember, the only voters that matter are the ones that vote for the candidates labeled ‘right wing nut case‘ by the media. I suspect Iran Contra actually helped Bush one. But four years was enough to prove him ‘sane’ so he only got the base vote (39.1 million) the second time around.

  • Sunfish

    What torpedoed Bush One wasn’t Ross Perot. It was the tumor on Bush’s ass named “Lee Atwater.” Anybody else remember “F@@@ the gun owners…where else are they going to go”?

    And that’s also why I don’t think Romney can win. Same issues, even.

    I wonder if Bob Barr is planning on another run. If he can explain away his Eric Holder fanboyism, he still wont win but watching that tap-dance will be fun to watch.