Barack Obama is going to win the presidential election, OK? Can we all agree on this now?
It’s been two years of endless campaigning and speculation only to arrive at the conclusion we all assumed at the outset. The New York Times has Obama at 83.7% chance of victory while Princeton goes as far as to give him a 98% chance of victory. The only people to put Romney ahead are traditionally right — leaning pollsters like Scott Rasmussen. All that’s left for the Republicans to do is turn to one another and ask, "what went wrong?"
This should have been a slam dunk for the GOP. The economy was barely growing, unemployment was high and they had unlimited campaign funding from their corporate owners (although maybe that last one doesn’t count since the Democrats had the same advantage). Why couldn’t the GOP play on people’s fears, manipulate individual prejudices and motivate the Christian extremists? These tactics have worked so well for the party in the past but just weren’t enough to secure victory in 2012.
The biggest problem? The candidate. Did anyone really believe Mitt Romney had a serious chance of becoming president? I mean, seriously, this guy? Come on. Let’s not forget that just 18 months ago, Romney was struggling to beat Newt Gingrich, Michelle Bachmann and Herman Cain. And the Republicans really thought he could beat Obama?
Although, we can’t place all the blame on Mitt and Paul, however tempting or easy it might be. Even the potentates of the Republican Party knew they weren’t going to win this one. That’s why none of their serious candidates tried to run; they’re saving them for 2016. At least, I hope that’s what they’re doing. If the Republican primaries really exhibited the best the party has for offer they’re in more trouble than I thought.
I suppose we should talk about policy; at least someone should during this campaign. The Republican’s came to the election with the same set of policies they’ve been pushing for the last thirty years: lower taxes for rich people, fewer public services and more war and military spending. The financial crisis and the global recession seem to have completely passed the Republican Party by. The GOP just keep banging their collective heads against that neo-liberal wall hoping people will continue to vote against their own economic interests. When your Party considers Paul Ryan to be a “policy wonk” you know you have a major intellectual deficit. And that’s not to mention the whole healthcare/abortion/rape issue. Honestly, in how many developed, industrialized countries does one of the major political parties find itself having to defend its position on rape?
Finally, if your still not convinced the GOP is a party in crisis, ask yourself this: Bill Clinton is everywhere campaigning for Barack Obama. Where the hell is George W. Bush?