Wednesday, January 20, 2010

The Sleeping Giant Finally Awakes

It's easy to be swept away by glitz. Folks buy cars all the time that they shouldn't have fallen in love with but couldn't help it. The paint was too shiny, the accessories too tempting, the ride too smooth, and next thing you know, those well-meaning folks are saddled with debt and have buyer's remorse.

A lot of Americans were swept off their feet by Obama...a guy who is well-spoken, looks sharp, has a winning smile, and generally fulfilled everyone's long-time vision for our first African-American president. His campaign promises, hope and change, sounded good and enough folks bought the ideas that Obama was swept into office. Now, however, the shine is off. A year has passed and the country officially has buyer's remorse.

Scott Brown's victory in our most Democratic state is exhibit A that America has finally seen through the glitz. Several Democratic politicians have gotten the message and today offered up conciliatory remarks, talking about the party needing to move more to the middle and away from the extreme left. But Obama may be the most arrogant human on the planet. He still feels that his personna is enough to sway folks to do what they don't want to do. But the people don't agree.

This is the great thing about America. Our democratic process allows people to effect change without resorting to coups or assassinations. On Tuesday, the shock-wave of change rippled all the way to the Oval Office without anyone firing a gun or storming a palace. Mistakes get corrected and politicians get the message without physical least some of them do.


Laci said...

Republicans are riding high in the wake of Scott Brown’s win, talking up an authentic resurgence for their party and a real chance for reclaiming power.

Don’t bet on it.

Yes, it is indisputable that the GOP has surged, especially in the past several months. Republicans won three major races in tough states — and watched the percentage of Americans who prefer Republicans over Democrats in hypothetical matchups rise to the highest level since 2004.

But it is also indisputable that the rise has little to do with the voters’ view of Republicans writ large — and that the very concerns that got them booted from power persist today.

Voters “have fallen out of love with the Democrats,” said Rep. Adam Putnam (R-Fla.). “They haven’t yet fallen back in love with us.”

POLITICO talked with many of the country’s most experienced political operatives, and each one warned Republicans against irrational exuberance.

Former New York Rep. Susan Molinari: “We have earned the right to crow a little bit. But the lesson we’ve learned from all of these races is that you ... can’t take anything for granted.”

Republican strategist Mary Matalin: “Killer negatives have lost their magic. This requires no attitude. Now we have the players on the field, and we just need to play. We remember how to do it.”

Former Rep. Vin Weber (R-Minn.): “Voters don’t want triumphalism. They still like the president as a person, so they don’t want to see a party celebrating his decline. ... The country wants to see the parties working together.”

Matthew Dowd, who consulted for former President George W. Bush and voted for President Barack Obama: “If any Republicans are running around town celebrating in jubilation, they should remember that in the country’s constant state of change, neither party gets more than a moment.”

Tim Perkins said...

I will agree on one thing: the Republicans cannot rest easy. There are troubling signs of that already. Today, Obama castigated the banking industry again and announced how he was going after the financial institutions. There should have been an immediate Republican response from some very important G.O.P. person. There was none.

Publius said...

Both good points. There was no response to Obama's rhetoric toward the financial industry because Republicans are afraid--and rightly so--to come down on the side of the banks. People are fed up with Wall Street right now.

Obama, it appears, is now trying to ride a wave of populist outrage toward the banks.It will be interesting to see if the Dems in Congress employ that strategy as well.

I also pointed out in the following link that we can't read too much into what has happened so far in Obama's first year.