Posted by: Joe Eds | August 17, 2010

Obama = One Term President

Roger Simon of Politico hedges his bets literally more than two years before November 2012 and says “Barack Obama is a one-term president.” Some of it is angled on the President commenting on the “Mosque near Ground Zero” flap. Article here, and its a very cynically political piece of work, but below is an excerpt:

I am not saying Obama is not smart; he is as smart as a whip. I am just saying he does not understand what savvy first-term presidents need to understand:  You have to stay on message, follow the polls, listen to your advisers  and realize that when it comes to doing what is right versus doing what is expedient, you do what is expedient so that you can get reelected and do what is right in the second term. If at all possible. And it will help your legacy. And not endanger the election of others in your party. And not hurt the brand. Or upset people too much.

According to Simon here, to get to your second-term you need to be a people-pleaser in your first. What a great message, Roger Simon. Really great.



  1. Great message or not, most times that would be sage advice for any POTUS. It won’t work for Obama though. Obama’s only real hope for a 2nd term is the “Clinton Shuffle.”

    If the GOP takes the House and or Senate in the upcoming elections and Obama swings from the Left towards the center – as with Clinton – he’ll probably get a 2nd term and a decent “legacy.” Otherwise, he’s doomed by circumstance and his own ideology.

    Without a GOP Congress, Obama can’t follow Simon’s advice because there’s nobody for him to effectively blame.

  2. Bah. Obama has been remarkably expedient for the last two years. He continued Bush’s TARP policy. He passed a stimulus everyone and their dog agreed was necessary. And he passed watered-down versions of financial reform and health care reform that left his own base extremely unhappy.

    The Dems will get take losses in the mid-terms because A) the economy sucks, B) they’re the incumbents, and C) with the majorities they currently hold there’s no where to go but down. None of which have a thing to do with ideology.

    Obama will be a one-termer if the economy is still in the tank come 2012, or if Afghanistan/Iraq are still in the news, and if the GOP avoids completely embarrassing itself once it retakes power. That last part is particularly key, since embarrassing themselves is precisely what they did with the government shutdown under Gingrich — which, I’d argue, had far more to do with Clinton’s re-election than any ideological shift on his part. And the chances that the current GOP crop is less radical than Gingrich’s strike me as just about nil.

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