The last time a sitting president faced a serious challenge in a primary was Jimmy Carter’s challenge from Ted Kennedy. In a similar fashion to Carter, Obama has really made a mess of the U.S. Don’t be surprised to see the same treatment from left during this election cycle. The vultures are already circling the corpse here. The ever-present Hillary Clinton is biding her time at the State Department, but don’t think for a second that she has abandoned hopes of a triumphant return to the White House. There is nothing Bill Clinton would like than a return to the presidential mansion, but without the responsibilities he faced as president. Also in the hunt are disgruntled members of the Democratic-left-wing. Russ Feingold and Howard Dean both spring to mind. Whether or not these two could make any headway against one of the most liberal presidents in decades isn’t known, but they could sure deplete the funds the president could use to defend himself from what will surely be a well-funded GOP candidate.
As Leon H. Wolf writes in Human Events, the liberals in the Democratic Party are already blaming the loss of the election on Obama’s failure to be more liberal. There might be some truth to that, but the real reason the Democrats lost is because even liberals who are out of work would like their jobs back. No one who lost their job amid the uncertainty caused by the Obama administration was worried about his stance on wiretapping or Gitmo.
In 2008, Barack Obama had harnessed the power of the internet and created a massive voter organization known as Obama for America (now known as Organizing for America). That political machine turned housewives and shop foremen into political strategists and activists on a scale not seen in the U.S. for some time. It only took the Tea Party two years to get their act together to counter that organization. Today there are Tea Party groups across America and they are battle tested and prepared for a fight in 2012.
As the Wall Street Journal notes, president Obama is now trying to dissociate himself from the massive expansions to government he has campaigned for and implemented. The editors continue that “We might buy that if we hadn’t listened to Mr. Obama’s State of the Union speech this February, in which he tried to make a case for the practical and moral virtues of bigger government. Or if we hadn’t read the many pieces by journalists reporting on Mr. Obama’s desire to be the liberal Reagan, reviving the public’s faith in government.”
On the other side of the aisle, there could be any number of challengers to President Obama. The GOP seems to be in a state of flux. Two years ago the presumptive candidate surely seemed to be Sarah Palin. I would say that isn’t the case today. There are many governors, senators, former governors and even congressmen making noises like they may want to enter the fray of national politics by running for president. The Wall Street Journal’s Stephanie Siman and Ana Campoy report that Texas governor Rick Perry is acting like a potential candidate. That makes four out of the five governors Timothy Jones wrote about in his piece 5 Governors to Watch acting like they are preparing a presidential run. Tim Pawlenty, Haley Barbour, Mitch Daniels and Rick Perry are all experienced executives, some with business experience, some with legislative experience. The field will be very crowded in the Republican primary.
Problems to the South – E.J. Smith
Mary Anastasia O’Grady wrote in the weekend paper that in Ciudad Juarez “In the 35 months since Mexican President Felipe Calderón launched his war against his country’s drug cartels, more than 7,100 people have been killed in this border city. Over 2,700 have died since January.” The drug violence that has caused all these deaths in northern Mexico is spilling over into the southwestern United States. It is imperative that the U.S. expand the military presence on the Mexican border to prevent crossings and to protect the ranchers and other inhabitants along the border.