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Monday, May 2, 2011

It's Still The Economy And Big Government, Stupid

Nate Silver at the NY Times, addressing the inevitable question as to how the success of the bin Laden operation helps Obama's electoral chances, does not see a long term electoral advantage arising from the killing of Osama bin Laden:
Yes, this is going to help Mr. Obama — to some degree or another — in November 2012. And yes, it’s also going to make Mr. Obama look much more formidable in the near-term.
But I’m not sure that the magnitude of the bump that Mr. Obama might get in the Gallup tracking poll is going to be especially predictive of how much the residue of this news might produce for him 19 months from now....

But, the 2012 election was probably not going to revolve around national security. Instead, the Republican nominee was probably going to attempt to make the campaign about the size of government and the future of the welfare state: how to deal with entitlement programs in the face of an increasing national debt.

This news may not change the focal point of the campaign. And it may not cause Americans to forget about the direction of the economy, which they remain largely unhappy about.

The biggest mistake that Republican candidates could make would be to be intimated by the approval ratings of a president who, while not easy to defeat, may still be quite vulnerable in November 2012.
I tend to agree with Silver, because he confirms my own views.  (Funny how that works.)

I'll go a little further than Silver, and predict that there will not be a large short term increase in Obama's approval rating, mostly because killing bin Laden -- while very important -- was not the center of criticism of Obama. 

The aggressive posture taken by Obama towards the Taliban and al-Qaeda in Pakistan, until now mostly from drones, was the rare issue in which Obama received strong support from Republicans, and weak support from Democrats.

Obama's electoral fortune and Osama's existence on this earth largely were unconnected. 

So don't take the in-your-face antics we're seeing on the part of Democrats too seriously; it's still the economy and big government, stupid.  And they know it.

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  1. I suppose the Obots will have cause to gloat that Obama got OBL while Bush didn't, but it'll be a mistake of their's to make this killing about Obama. It isn't about Obama. It isn't about Bush. It's about our country. It's something that unites us. Trying to turn OUR victory into Obama's victory will backfire.

  2. This will help Obama with his base.
    "Look, we can handle nat'l security too!"
    Also "We got him, now we can bring all the troops home".

    A big Hooah to all involved.

  3. Getting OBL is good for our morale, bad for AQs if we can prove it, but realistically, that's all.

    AQ isn't going to collapse and disintegrate, and anyone who thinks that the WOT is now over, is an idiot. Not that there aren't a lot of idiots on the left. But even Obama knows better, knows that if he lets up the pressure now, AQ will recover, and that he runs the risk of a major terrorist attack on his watch.

  4. As one indicated by one report the vile one’s death, is great news, BUT that doesn’t mean Al Qaeda is dead.

    Don’t understand the “buried at sea” portions of reports, why on earth would anyone want to do that to the innocent creatures of the sea, is beyond me.

    Brave men of our forces, congratulations on such fine work. Obama, on this I must give you creds, you ordered it done, our people did it.

    GWB, hopefully a little piece of your heart and soul, will rest with some happiness.

    Zawahiri, you’re next.

    One more thing, Pakistan, you should be wiped from the globe..

  5. "Getting OBL is good for our morale, bad for AQs if we can prove it,"

    Are you at all familiar with the history of fighting religious extremists? Martyrs most definitely do not reduce their morale. Quite the opposite.

  6. "The Dollar Plummets" May 2nd Edition

    "After some patriotic sentiment modestly pushed the dollar to just above humiliation levels, the DXY is right back to lowest level since July 2008. We still have about 150 pips to go until the all time low of 71.3521 from April 22, 2008 is taken out. After that, the CNY (Chinese Yuan) better be ready to take over as reserve currency cause it will get ugly."

    The value of the dollar is inversely correlated to US domestic oil prices and inflation. The dollar is falling because the US government is flooding the world with US dollars and their equivalents. Just one chicken that could come home to roost in 2012. But the Fed and Treasury have some ability to reverse this process. Might they do just that in the spring and summer of 2012 in time for the elections? In other words: fewer dollars, rising dollar value, hence falling domestic prices for anything imported, including oil.

  7. Independents are a fickle voting bloc. I think he'll get a bit more than a transitory bump from this with them.

    Looking back, early in his term he ordered sharpshooters assassinate the Somali pirates who had taken hostages. That was a risk, but it was also a success. Second, he's taken the fight to AQ in Yemen. Third, while he may not have directly ordered the bombing of Qaddafi's residence, he did not stop it. Qaddafi's days are numbered. Finally, he's ordered the execution of another high risk plan that resulted in the killing of Osama. The comparison to Jimmy Carter meme, who incompetently bungled the Iran hostage rescue, is falling apart. I'm sure the 2012 campaign commercials are already being made to show Obama as a strong, determined military leader with a successful national security track record.

    On the other hand, independents have to juxtapose all that against the fact he allowed himself to be pressured by a game show host, which made him look terribly weak (to me). But that story is now dead and will be overwhelmed by the killing of OBL.

  8. March 1991, right after first Gulf War: President Bush 41's approval rating at 90+ percent. November 1992: voted out of office.

  9. In the short term JimMtnViewCa is correct, IMO, but two months down the road I'm not quite so sure. As more and more information becomes available I suspect hardcore lefties will discover an increasing number of reasons to find fault with O and forget they once approved. Memory is such a transient thing with the mentally ill.