Monday, September 17, 2012

A Bad Week For President Obama

You might not know it from the Mainstream Media but President Obama had a terrible week last week. Here are some of the things that went wrong for him:

Libya and the Protests: This was the first time since 1979 that an American ambassador has been killed on the job. The Obama administration looks weak and unprepared. They are also giving inconsistent responses about advance warning. Ambassador to the UN Rice says that it was a spontaneous event. The Libyan government says that it was planned. This makes Rice's statement look like a cover-up.

The White House is also insisting that the protests are against a movie instead of the United States. This ignores reality. Radical Islamists regularly search western culture for things to spark outrage. If they hadn't found the movie they would have found something else. The proof is in the date of the embassy attacks - September 11.

The Response: The consistent response to the killings from the Obama Administration has been, at best, tepid, "You have every right to be angry but you should stop short of killing people." This has not calmed the protests. Instead it makes us look weak. It comes close to an apology.

Shooting First: Hours after criticizing Romney for shooting first and aiming later, Obama said that Egypt is no longer an ally but not an enemy. Egypt has a legal status as an ally which grants it many trade concessions. The State Department had to clarify that Obama was not revoking this status and that Egypt is still an ally.

The Economy: The Fed announced a program known as QE3 that will keep long-term interest rates down. Economies that are in recovery do not need stimulus programs. Worse, QE3 has no end date. It will be continued until the economy recovers. This means that the Fed thinks that there is no real recovery in sight. A stimulus program is supposed to act like CPR - short term measures that will lead to a self-sustaining recovery, not life support. The response to this admission was that the country's credit rating was lowered from AA to AA-.

The Teacher's Strike: Chicago's teachers went on strike against Obama's former Chief of Staff, Mayor Rahm Emanuel. Emanuel wants some teacher accountability. National unions see this as a line in the sand and are urging the union to hold firm. The teacher's union, the NEA is one of the Democrats' biggest and most consistent supporters. If they lose this contest they are likely to take their frustration out on Obama.

The Polls: Obama got a bounce from the Democratic National Convention but it was short-lived. He is back to his pre-convention numbers in which he is ahead but within the margin of error. Worse he is below 50%. Traditionally the undecided voters break for the challenger. They already know the incumbent. If they were going to support him they would have already decided. If you assume that Obama will lose any state where he is polling below 49% then Romney not only takes all of the undecided states, he takes most of the "leans Obama" ones and wins with a healthy electoral majority.

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