Does Obama Have A Second Term Vision?
April 20, 2012 2 Comments
Just when you think the Presidential election couldn’t get any more ridiculous after the who hates dogs debate earlier this week now we have cookiegate. No, seriously, cookiegate. Tomorrow we’ll find out Mitt Romney doesn’t like Batman and once criticized baseball. It’s only April and the campaign has devolved into a series of meaningless attacks that are supposed to outrage us all into voting for Obama. When Romney went after his GOP rivals he at least attacked their actual record. Granted, he never told us anything about himself other than he isn’t the conservative heretic everyone else was. But he generally refrained from nonsense issues like dogs and cookies.
All of this nonsense about dogs and cookies distracts attention from Obama. We’ve talked about his record before, the 8% unemployment for 3 years, the $5 trillion in new debt, the 48 million Americans on food stamps and the gas prices doubling. But what we haven’t talked about, in fact what Obama hasn’t talked about, is what his vision is for the next four years. Obama has a limited record to run on, not much out there is positive. Whether it’s the failed stimulus, Obamacare or financial reform which doesn’t appear to be doing much of anything, Obama can’t spend the election talking about his successes so long as the economy is rotten.
So what is Obama’s vision for the next four years? Is he going to run his campaign on the Buffet tax plan, which will net the government a measly few hundred million a year off of 400 rich taxpayers? Is he going to base his campaign on meaningless regulation of boogeyman oil speculators who if regulated in the US will simply move their speculation overseas? Surely he can’t run on more government, not in a climate like we have right now. So he can’t tout an expansion of Obamacare, Cap & Trade or a massive increase in welfare spending. He can’t even run on massive tax reform because he wants to increase taxes, something the American public generally opposes.
We of course must acknowledge that Romney doesn’t have much of a vision for the future either. We still don’t know what Romney really stands for as he’s never been forced to tell us. He won by branding his opponents conservative heretics, when in reality he’s never really been a conservative. But what we do know of Romney’s vague vision is that it includes tax reform, a modest reduction in taxes, a lowering of corporate taxes (which are the highest in the world) and a repeal of Obamacare. I suppose that’s something of a vision, if not very imaginative.
Romney needs to have a vision but it doesn’t have to be grandiose. He can run against Obama’s record, with at least a shot at success. Obama needs to tell us why his first term was successful and what his vision is for a second term. In short, he needs to tell us why we should want more of the same. With the economy a mess, Obamacare likely heading to the Supreme Court waste bin and various messes all over government, Obama doesn’t have much to run on. How can he sell us more of the same when what he’s done is unpopular?
Obama’s campaign knows it cannot present a vision of America anywhere near what the last four years have been like if they want to win re-election. People aren’t in the mood for more government, they’re in the mood for fiscal restraint. That’s why the Obama team isn’t talking about the President’s record or his vision for tomorrow. They’re talking about dogs and cookies. Expect it to only get more ridiculous as the days go on, though it’s hard to imagine it getting more ridiculous than cookiegate.