I haven't had a chance to blog in a few days and I missed it. I'm back again today playing catch up. Be prepared for some quick hits type thoughts and not detailed essays today.
The Virginia governor election is tomorrow. There's talk that Terry McAuliffe, the Clinton ally Democratic nominee is reportedly tanking in the waning days of the campaign and Republican nominee could steal the election from the heavily favored Democrat. As much as I'd love to believe that, I don't buy it. We were told by many pollsters that Mitt Romney was going become president in 2012. He not only lost, he lost dramatically. Until I see a win, I'm not counting it. If the election were to be held in another 2-3 weeks, I'd be willing to believe that McAuliffe could fall far enough fast enough to secure a GOP win. Right now, I'm more than skeptical.
All politics is local. That does not change. Tea Party supporters who believe that we should run ultra-conservative candidates in Vermont because it's the right thing to do, miss the point that politics is a long haul game. You can't win it in a single election. Liberal Democrats took decades to get the country into the mess it is in today and it can be fixed all at once because people's perceptions about right and wrong took decades to change in sufficient numbers and will take a similar amount of time to change back. But Tea Party supporters aren't alone in their desire to be right about conservatives winning elections. Liberalesque Chris Christie believes he knows better than the GOP how to win elections. Tactically, he may have some credibility. The problem with his notion is that while it may work in New Jersey, that same logic may not apply in Alabama. All politics is local is still true. Just like 50 different states can come up with better, more specific solutions to needs than a one size fits all solution (like for healthcare) winning elections takes effort at as local a level as possible. Obama won in 2012 by taking the approach that an individual is as local as you can get. They used regression models to target the most likely unlikely voters. The future of elections borrows from the past.
With cratering public approval the Obama presidency has entered it's waning phase, also known as lame duck status. Or has it? Adding to the NSA spying scandal (clearly first among the plague of Obama scandals), the Obamacare website woes, and the shattering illusion of keeping your coverage and keeping your doctor under Obamacare have hit the president's job approval hard. He's at 40% popularity. Liberal satirists don't mind poking him now and again lately. They are preparing to turn their attention to electing Hillary Clinton in 2016. But the president understands that he's no lame duck. The polls that counted have already happened in 2008 and 2012. Yes his influence is waning but he's no lame duck. He's got court justices to appoint. He's got an agenda to try to fulfil. He's got executive orders, and vetoes and pardons to dispense. He's got fundraisers and speeches he can use to try to continue to shape public opinion in 2014, and 2016 and indeed beyond. Wait until liberals have an Obama legacy to canonize - he'll be in vogue again in 2017. And he can clearly still continue to have an impact on America until at least 2016. Sadly for the country the impact is a very negative one, even if not all voters realize it yet.