Saul Alinsky, Rules For Radicals, Rule #1
This is textbook Alinsky.
Barack Obama is in much worse shape politically than most people (with the notable exception of Rush) realize; he cannot win this election. He can no longer even keep it close enough to steal. That's why he's deliberately sowing chaos.
Most people, even on our side, have no clue just how much trouble Obama really is in. This purpose of this piece is to present the evidence. What's surprised me in working on this piece is how strong the case Obama can't win really is, and how much I had to cut.
Just a reminder, to win a Presidential election, you need 270 electoral votes.
I base my understanding of Barack Obama's efforts on his publicly announced re-election strategy. Also, this fact-free video from Obama's campaign backs up the understanding from the Jay Cost piece. The short version is this: Obama plans to win re-election by boosting turnout among minorities (especially Hispanics) and the Jon Stewart crowd and mitigating his losses among everyone else.
The biggest problem with Obama's publicly announced re-election strategy is that it's never been done before. As Cost notes:
So this would be a path to 270 electoral votes that might include Colorado, Nevada, and Virginia (which historically have been Republican) but not Ohio (a quadrennial swing state) or even Pennsylvania (which historically has been Democratic).That's not to say it's impossible, but it seems highly improbable. Also, as this video from the RNC makes clear, the state by state polling data for Obama in the key states STINKS.
Finally, whatever flaws he might have, Karl Rove has been doing an excellent job tracking Obama's fundraising and it also stinks. As Karl observes:
Last July, President Obama's campaign announced that it had raised an average of $29 million in each of the previous three months for itself and the Democratic National Committee (DNC). I was only mildly impressed. After all, that was well below the $50 million a month needed to reach the campaign's goal of a $1 billion war chest for the 2012 race.
Seven months later, I'm even less impressed. Through January, the president has raised an average of $24 million a month for his campaign and the DNC.By themselves the interrelated issues of Economy/Bailouts/Debt/Spending/Health Care and Obama's Catastrophic Foreign Policy nearly doom Obama; those broad national issues are anvils around Obama's ankles. Beyond national issues and campaign inside baseball, however, certain actions by the Obama administration alienate key voter groups in key states in a way that makes it impossible for Obama to get to 270 electoral votes.
Consider the following seven examples:
Catholic Church and Obama's War on Faith:
I've already discussed this issue at length. The short version is that Catholics are almost perfectly distributed across traditional swing states in a way that alienating them does unique damage.
Beyond the simple distribution of where Catholics live and vote, alienating Catholics is stupid from an ideological perspective. Despite Chris Matthews' ill-informed suppositions, most Catholics aren't particularly conservative. As Jonathan Last notes: Catholics "tend to be politically liberal and socially cautious. If they were less holy men, stauncher conservatives would call them squishes." Remember, Obama won Catholics in 2008 and many Catholic Institutions supported Obamacare in 2010.
Finally, for a campaign that has based so much of it's publicly announced strategy around courting Hispanics, it's worth noting that Hispanics are overwhelmingly Catholic.
Anyone who thinks Obama's shameful treatment of Israel won't cost him significant votes missed the special election in New York City last September. In that election, Republican Bob Turner won in large part due to opposition to the Obama administration's Israel policy. As the Jerusalem Post reported at the time:
The district, well known for being a Democratic stronghold, was captured by the Republicans after their successful efforts to reframe the race as being an opportunity to “send a message” to Washington – and to tap into Jewish discontent with the US president’s Middle East policies.In that election, Turner was supported by former NYC Mayor Ed Koch (D). Since then, Prof. Alan Dershowitz, another prominent liberal Jew, has turned on Obama's allies at Media Matters.
“In Tuesday’s special election, Jewish voters supported the Republican candidate by a clear, but not massive majority. That vote evidences a maturity of judgment as opposed to robotic partisanship.
“Thus, unlike some other minorities who instinctively vote for the candidate of their race or religion, irrespective of whether they are the best candidate,” Zell concluded, “the Jews in NY-9 voted on principle and ignored our common religion with Mr. Weprin to support the candidate who will support Israel most effectively.”
Alienating Jewish voters over Israel hurts Obama in Florida and Pennsylvania. Based on the economy alone, I doubt Obama can win Florida; Obama's treatment of Israel seals this deal. Remember, liberal Jews in Palm Beach county were at the center of the 2000 election controversy. There are over 600,000 Jews living in Florida and a modest shift in their voting, on top of the general disgust that exists with Obama over the economy, makes winning Florida damn near impossible for Obama. We'll cover Pennsylvania in more detail next.
Barack Obama's refusal to permit energy development hurts him in traditional swing states like Pennsylvania and Ohio and even less-traditional swing states like Virginia. Obama's opposition to energy development makes an abstract argument against Obama's economic policies VERY concrete. While Obama said some nice things about natural gas in his State of the Union, SOTU speeches are notoriously meaninglessness.
Energy issues are unique in that they give Republican Governors like John Kasich in Ohio and Bob McDonnell in Virginia an opportunity to kick the crap out of Obama in local media. As gas prices continue to rise and employment continues to stagnate, the daily contrast between Obama and the Goverors of these key states can only hurt Obama.
As noted above, mobilizing Hispanics is a key element of Obama's publicly announced strategy. Obama needs Hispanics to show up and vote for him in droves if he hopes to win Colorado, New Mexico, and Nevada. Unfortunately, for Hispanics, Obama has been all over the place on Immigration reform. The biggest problem with Obama is that he promised the moon to Hispanics on Immigration and he's failed to deliver or even fight particularly hard. Most people can live with a failure to deliver, but they can't stand being pandered to insincerely.
Obama is correct when he states that deportations are at an all time high, but he fails to mention that the bulk of those deportations are from illegals who are basically harmless. Meanwhile Obama hasn't done squat about the Drug Cartels that threaten the daily physical safety of Hispanics. As I noted in this space a few weeks ago, Obama's failures have created an opportunity for Republicans among South Texas Hispanics. I strongly suspect a similar dynamic exists in other states.
This is the most politically stupid thing the Obama administration has done. As the Cost piece above states, Obama's publicly announced re-election strategy is dependent on heavy turnout among the Jon Stewart crowd. In February 2009, Obama's Justice Department promised to end raids on Medical Marijuana clinics. In 2011, Obama broke that promise. This is a surprisingly big issue in Colorado, and it antagonizes Obama's biggest supporters. On Medical Marijuana, Obama has treated the Jon Stewart crowd the same way he's treated Hispanics on Immigration.
This is the one issue I've seen anger my Obamabot friends. I don't know how many of these folks will vote for a Republican, but considering how few of them follow politics closely, it wouldn't surprise me if a substantial number of them pull a classic stoner move and forget to vote. Could you pick a stupider issue on which to alienate the Jon Stewart crowd?!?
Barack Obama's publicly stated strategy hinges on North Carolina. All the "smart" people (who aren't really that smart) say the election will come down to North Carolina. That's why the Demorcat Party convention is in Charlotte.
Unfortunately, for Obama, he won North Carolina by less than 14,000 votes in 2008. The Democrat Governor has chosen not to run for re-election in the face of persistently high unemployment. And finally, Obama's violent allies in Occupy Wall St have promised to make their presence felt at the Democrat party convention; how'd that work out in 1968?!?
The conventional wisdom that the 2012 election will come down to North Carolina is painfully weak and Obama can't win without it.
While the so-called smart people are telling us the election will come down to North Carolina (traditional Republican state), the truth is that this election will come down to Wisconsin (traditional Democrat state). Over the past year, Wisconsin has been the most important state to watch in politics. Governor Scott Walker, elected in 2010, has enacted sweeping structural reforms to fix his state Government. As a result, he now faces a recall from the state's public employee unions. As the American Thinker reports:
So is the left winning there? Wisconsin is a left-leaning state, the sort whose general support Democrats need if they are going to rule America. If Democrats fail in these recall elections, then the left will have suffered a strategic loss which may unravel its long dominance of American politics.
The American Thinker piece captures most of what you need to know about Wisconsin. I'll only add a few points. First, the union assault on the (repeatedly demonstrated) will of Wisconsin voters alienates the broad apolitical middle. Second, because the unions have forced Tea Party groups in Wisconsin to stay in the fight, Tea Party groups in Wisconsin are becoming incredibly battle hardened. Finally, by the time November rolls around, the contrast between Governor Walker's successful reforms and Barack Obama's failure will be obvious.
While it's premature to make definitive statements about November, early signs are very positive.
What does this all mean?!?
In 2008, Barack Obama won 365 electoral votes. He won't win Indiana (11 EV, 40.1% Job Approval). That means he caps out at 354 EV.
From those 354 EV, I've identified major trouble for him among voter groups that are essential to his publicly announced strategy in Wisconsin (10 EV, 47.4% JA), Florida (29 EV, 43.6% JA), Pennsylvania (20 EV, 45.0% JA), Ohio (18 EV, 42.1% JA), Virginia (13 EV, 44.5% JA), Colorado (9 EV, 40.4% JA -- ouch), New Mexico (5 EV, 41.7% JA), Nevada (6 EV, 41.3% JA), and North Carolina (15 EV, 43.7% JA).
Even without including Michigan (16 EV, 48.1% JA) or Iowa (6 EV, 45.6% JA) in the Republican column, that leaves Obama with 229 EV. You need 270 Electoral votes to win. For those of you in Rio Linda, 270 is a bigger number than 229.
Barack Obama already knows everything I've outlined in this piece. He has access to much more sophisticated polling data than I do. That's why his administration and Occupy Wall St is deliberately sowing chaos.
Conservatives need to understand reality and act within it. Stop worrying about losing this election and start planning for assuming power amidst massive chaos.
It's really that simple.