John Wolfe: Why I'm Running Against Obama in 2012


President Obama may have the Democratic nomination under wraps, but he cannot ignore the undercurrent of discontent in his own party.

I want him to hear it loud and clear. Dissatisfaction runs deep – not least of all in the South.

I won the vote in 3 districts in Louisiana, and had 12% of the vote across the state. 24% of Democrats voted against Obama statewide. The anti-Obama vote reached a peak of 43% in Oklahoma. Over 11% of Democrats nationwide are voting against Obama in contested races.

In Louisiana and throughout the South, one can hear echoes of the populist Louisiana politician Huey Long, who in 1934 coined the phrase “Every man a king.” His wealth distribution plan hit home for Americans who were losing their homes and struggling to put food on the table. Back then, as America was being plunged into the Great Depression, the income disparity between the richest 1% of Americans and the remaining 99% of us who share a smaller piece of the pie was almost a mirror image of what it is today.

I launched my underdog campaign not because I thought I could win against the political machine but because I refuse to stand idly by as this administration pursues the wrong priorities.

Under Obama’s leadership, the Democratic Party has proposed a misguided healthcare reform, continues to reward corporate thugs in the economic bailout, and falls short on foreign policy.

As voters demonstrate, there is a groundswell of would-be supporters who agree with me and who feel Obama has sold out the Democratic Party:

Sold it to Wall Street cronies who are receiving billions of tax-payer dollars in bailout funds, who continue to get rich off their disastrous business practices, and who Obama has given seats of power in the White House.

Sold it to the very same military machine that we demanded end the war – but whose budgets have only increased under the Obama administration.

Sold it to the corporate mammoths that have driven our healthcare costs to the highest level of any developed nation, and who are salivating at the windfall that would come with the universal forced buy-in under Obamacare.

Mr. Obama, in an effort to walk the middle line, you are moving further away from the genuine democratic values and blurring the line between right and left.

Your compromising, dealing and appeasing is too much.

The 99% is not just a number – it represents an America that is losing.

Losing their houses to the very same corporations we are paying to keep afloat. Losing their jobs at the same time corporate executive salaries far outstrip their performance. And losing their lives in wars built on lies and deceit.

As a result, we have lost confidence in the great “hope” and “change” that you brought to America after two Bush administrations.

More must be done to fulfill the promise.

We need bold leadership to bring America to a better place for all of us – not just for the 1%.

The next president needs to take bold action – not pandering steps. Prosecute those who knowingly drove America into an economic depression for their own profits. Impose a 1% tax on speculative banking and derivatives. And cut military spending along with the troops engaged in unjust wars.

The Occupy Wall Street movement may appear to be represented only by the ragtag few willing to stake tents in town squares. It is the tip of the mounting dissatisfaction facing this administration.

I share their demands – and I’m taking that message from the street corners to presidential race.