April 3, 2011

The reason why Obama should not want to run for a second term in 2012.

If he is reelected, then that will be the end of running for President. He'll be 54 years old, and what will he do? Move to Hawaii and play golf? But he could move to Hawaii and play golf in January 2013, if that's an enticing prospect. And, if he does, he won't have maxed out his eligibility for being President. He can tantalize us, year after year, with the possibility that he would run for another term — a fascinatingly out-of-sequence term. The thing he's best at is running for President. Why let that game expire? He could toy with it in 2016, when he's 58, and in 2020, when he's a clear-visioned 62, and in 2024, when he's a well-seasoned 66, and in 2028, when he's a beneficent elder, offering his services once again, because his country longs for the golden days of 2011. It will never end, as long as the icon of hope and change — oh, my lord, I typo'd "hope and chains"! — walks the face of the earth... unless he serves that second term.

(Idea originally suggested by Meade and developed in a conversation between Althouse + Meade that took place as we walked on the Ice Age Trail, Saturday, April 3, 2011.)

61 comments:

RuyDiaz said...

Nah, if he's re-elected, after leaving office, he could start a movement to repeal the twenty-second amendment.

The Drill SGT said...

The thing he's best at is running for President

The thing he's world class at is raising money by talking about hope and change. I see him hitting the speakifying circuit.... I hope in 2013...

dbp said...

the biggest reason is cash. He can only cash-in once he leaves office.

Then he can relax--being president is hard! Enjoy his loot. And he can tantalize us with the prospect of running again, someday.

Julius said...

Could that be called pulling a Jerry Brown?

I don't think you two appreciate how much Amerika is done with Obama. Done. Done. Done! Done like fish leftovers from three days ago! Thinking about his campaign of "hope" and "change" makes most people gag.

Gone, gone with him, I say! Just go! Maybe to that home for deposed dictators that NATO is supposedly setting up for Gaddafi. Maybe we can send Jimmy Carter there too. And Newt Gingrich. And Bono...

SteveR said...

I think his ego is too big to wait. He doesn't really like the actual job but he sure likes the adulation. He doesn't seem like he would get into an extended tease, he ran the first chance he could, too early by at least 4 years, probably 8.

campy said...

He's going to run and he's going to win, and Althouse is going to vote for him.

Fen said...

Jimmy Carter couldn't make a comeback, even if age was not a factor. No way Obama does.

Besides, its much harder than Obama thought. And I doubt he wants to clean up his own mess. I expect a primary challenge and a lackluster effort by our Diversity Hire. He prefers the adulation of the UN and the cocktail crowd.

I hope the next president continually complains about "the mess Obama got us in to"

Ann Althouse said...

"I think his ego is too big to wait."

He wouldn't be waiting. The whole point would be to preserve his eligibility to run, which would last for the rest of his life. My argument assumes ego. I'm making the argument that is aimed at his ego.

Old Dad said...

"The reason why Obama should not want to run for a second term in 2012?"

Because he sucks and wants to eat his waffles?

The Crack Emcee said...

"In 2028, when he's a beneficent elder, offering his services once again, because his country longs for the golden days of 2011."

Oh, man, are you two hilarious.

Four. More. Beers. Four. More. Beers....

NotYourTypicalNewYorker said...

If Obama is as smart as the sycophants think he will get out and cash in. It's haaard out there for a president.

I don't think his ego will allow this.

When Obamas past becomes clear(it will)and his record while in office is scrutinized, he will be seen for what he is,a _____.

Fill in your own blank.

He will only be able to run for something like running the U.N. (snatching it away from Bubba Clinton)

I've always thought that his bowing and scraping around the globe had another, higher purpose....Himself!

Ut said...

4:05pm
5:16pm
5:29pm
5:44pm

You're posting WAY TOO FAST.

The reason we come to Althouse is to have a conversation.

When you post this quickly, you KILL that conversation because we don't have time to converse before you've changed the subject.

What's your hurry?

Slow down.

Kansas City said...

Obama can run and lose and do essentially the same thing - albeit with a little less mystique. I think Grover Cleveland won, lost and came back and won again.

I think most presidents would be wiser to pass on a second term, because the second term is seldom successful. But the ego does not let theme do it, and Obama's ego is supersized.

I also think a presidential candidate could effectively promise to serve only one term. It was an obvious good move for McCain to make and, even though he told his staff he was going to do it, he changed his mind.

edutcher said...

Have to disagree that running for POTUS is his best thing.

Bamboozling a lot of credulous people with the hopenchange rap is what he did best, but he can't do that again. Now he has to run on his record for the first time.

No coasting on his race.

No bluffing about how smart he is.

And we will be recovering from Little Zero when he's 80. So he might as well run now. Things will only get worse.

SteveR said...

He wouldn't be waiting. The whole point would be to preserve his eligibility to run, which would last for the rest of his life. My argument assumes ego. I'm making the argument that is aimed at his ego.

Perhaps that makes sense but I think Americans will be tired of him.

pbAndj said...

So, in this (insane) scenario would BHO hang out w/ the former presidents.

Or, would he hang w/ the perpetual candidates? Maybe he can organize the community of perma-candidates. He, Paul, Gingrich, and Nader will work together to raise money for victims of natural disasters.

Maguro said...

Great idea, you should pass it on to Axelrod. Maybe he could succeed Rahm as Mayor of Chicago or put in a couple of terms as President of Kenya while he's tantalizing us. I, for one, am totally ready to be tantalized.

Mick said...

Ann Althouse said...

""I think his ego is too big to wait."

He wouldn't be waiting. The whole point would be to preserve his eligibility to run, which would last for the rest of his life. My argument assumes ego. I'm making the argument that is aimed at his ego."



Obviously, you still don't get it. And you call yourself a "law prof"?

Please. He is NOT ELIGIBLE NOW. Obama was born a British Subject. No matter WHERE he was born he is not a natural born Citizen, eligible to be POTUS. Has the cheese gotten to your brain? Honestly, I would NEVER send my kids to that idiot school that has "law profs" that think the founders would have thought one born a British Subject could be eligible to be POTUS

Big Mike said...

Interesting discussion, but since he's already running, it's kind of moot, donja think?

former law student said...

Supreme Court a la Taft.

Oligonicella said...

"He'll be 54 years old, and what will he do?"

Learn a trade.

madAsHell said...

So, in this (insane) scenario would BHO hang out w/ the former presidents.

Interesting thought! When Obama leaves office in 2013, which Presidents will still be above ground?
W
BillyJeff
HW?
Jimmah??

Well...W ain't gonna have none of him.

BillyJeff has already said that guy should be fetching me coffee.

HW well....I'm pretty sure that he feels the same as W

Jimmah is actually useful with his hands. Obama doesn't know a nail from a hammer.

Yeah...the former Presidents will find him useless.

Digory said...

I think there's a tortured Gaddafi analogy in there somewhere. Just as David Cameron's refusal to let the old butcher retire to some sunny St. Helena ensures that he goes down fighting, the ignominy we modern Americans attach to any President who can't be a consecutive two-termer guarantees that this scenario will never happen.

ddh said...

I don't think Obama is that great as a campaigner because he can only project a limited emotional range--Clinton was better and probably still would be better, if he could run again for President. It seems to me that Obama the candidate caught the mood of 2008 when all kinds of people could project onto him all kinds of hope and change fantasies. Remember, he was going to pay your utilities and mortgage. In 2016 and later, voters would know better, suspecting he would like either to resurrect Obamacare or come up with some other entitlement program to spread the wealth around.

Naw, once Obama leaves the White House, the bubble will pop, and few will dream of a second term for him. What about his term so far suggests a golden glow of memory is likely to form?

Ut said...

"He'll be 54 years old, and what will he do?"

Ditch that fucking Klingon he's had to deal with the past four years and get busy stretching out Vera Baker's vagina again?

Sheesh. Is this even a question?

Rose said...

No thinking person will ever vote for this empty vessel again. The mirrored facade is tarnished and shattered. He has betrayed the high ideals people saw in the mirror - as they saw themselves and all their hopes and dreams embodied in that reflection.

ricpic said...

Obama, before he renamed himself Obama, was almost certainly a drug mule. His proper future is in striped pajamas.

Ut said...

"No thinking person will ever vote for this empty vessel again."

This Twink ain't empty, sweetheart. He's full of creamy George W. Bushy goodness.

If the Republicans nominate Mitt Romney, then I'll be voting for Obama for the first time now that I know he has no intention of ever doing what he says to the liberal fucking MORON Democrats who will nominate him and that instead, he will govern like Dubya.

Phil 3:14 said...

Slow blogging day?

Phil 3:14 said...

I think he's still trying to answer Robert Redford's question at the end of
The Candidate

sarge said...

"if the Republicans nominate Mitt Romney, then I'll be voting for Obama for the first time now that I know he has no intention of ever doing what he says to the liberal fucking MORON Democrats who will nominate him and that instead, he will govern like Dubya.


sarge here thats funny an more en a little true excpt yar got one thing wrong obama an his minions will steal a lot less truf is obamas the most qualyfied republikin runnin in 2012

ps this is a purty dumb thread and the bar har is set kinda high fer dumb no surprise this meed wud be involved also please stay off ice age trail its only for real wisconinites not forigners like meed an ann outeast

campy said...

No thinking person will ever vote for this empty vessel again.

That still leaves him a huge majority even before the fraud kicks in.

David said...

This assumes he is in good health. The smoker-in-chief has been quite sparing with his health records. I have always wondered whether he is concealing something.

Lucius said...

Bill Clinton in his dotage feels like a more robustly manly figure than the ectomorph-in-chief. His Democratic flock remember his unruly appetites, and the six years of epic defensive playing in the latter 3/4ers of his presidency, and it makes him look positively Churchillian compared to Obama.

Obama in 'retirement', whenever it happens, will make Jimmy Carter feel like Jerry Ford on the nuisance scale, we can be sure.

knox said...

... and in 2028, when he's a beneficent elder

You mean, when he has "gravitas," like Joe Biden.

Lem said...

Interesting idea except that two termers are considered/fare better historically.. I believe.

Not that Obama cares about that stuff.

DaveW said...

It's way easier to get re-elected as a sitting president than running from scratch. The shine would be off the "first black president" bauble and he'd no longer be the incumbent. There would be no compelling reason to elect him and absent that he'd have to run on his record - and all his bad decisions would be rotting in the sun and any good decisions would be taken for granted.

With somebody else in office the voter-perceived risk (devil we know versus the devil we do not know) of electing a different president would not exist. I've always thought that perceived risk was a huge factor for incumbent presidents.

If he leaves office with the idea that he could run again 8 or 12 years down the road that would be a huge blunder. Axelrod won't let him make that mistake. Overcoming incumbency is not easily done.

cubanbob said...

I would offer Obama two hundred million bucks to resign today (and Biden fifty million for resigning today as well) just to stop the harm these clowns are doing the nation. Heck I would offer fifty million to each democrat senator and twenty five million for every democrat congressman to resign today as well. It's cheap considering the damage avoided. Of course they would have to give up being involved in politics for life.

Titus said...

That ice age trail is right next to the farm my dad grew up on. He still owns some of the land by it. Did you happen to drive down Lee Road? Named after my dad's family. We talked about it tonight. He said it is a good place to walk the doggies.

Watch out for golf size ball hal tonight.

Carol_Herman said...

An anchor on the top of the ticket, would doom democrats all the way down. And, I'm sure lots of people are afraid. And, lots of people are running into problems collecting enough money to run.

(While Meg Whitman, thinking she'd buy the governor's bauble in California, LOST. Even though Chris Cristie came out and did some heavy lifting.)

Truman didn't want to run against Ike in 1952. And, LBJ didn't want to run at all in 1968, after a New Hampshire primary.

For 2012, I'm sure all the democrats are trying to figure out how to get Sarah Palin to be the republican competition.

And, who knows? What if Donald Trump pulls a Ross Perot?

What happened to the elder Bush, where he lost his re-election bid ... happened to Taft, too. When "The Bull Moose" Theodore Roosevelt wanted Taft dumped.

In that race? Woodrow Wilson won. Theodore Roosevelt came in 2nd. And, then Taft came in 3rd. OUCH.

What if people re-elect Obama in 2012, but Congress, House and Senate, goes to the Republicans? Could there be an impeachment like there was against Nixon in 1974?

Nixon's 1972 win was a 60% to 40% blowout. Against McGovern.

Would the republicans have the guts to impeach? Or are they just the "rubber stamp league?"

george said...

You have a really sick mind Althouse.

Carol_Herman said...

Back in 1952, when Adlai Stevenson was running against Eisenhower (Ike). A woman came up to Stvenson and said: "EVERY INTELLIGENT PERSON IN AMERICA WILL VOTE FOR YOU."

Stevenson replied: Alas, I lose.

(In other words "intelligent people" don't make up the mainstream.)



Stevenson lost twice.

He also had a great sense of humor.

IF Obama chooses not to run in 2012, all the crap of his birth certificate will stick to him.

a psychiatrist who learned from veterans said...

A great idea. I hope he reads your blog.

John Lynch said...

Promote him to King.

David R. Graham said...

"I'm making the argument that is aimed at his ego."

True, his ego governs. However, his ego can just as easily say that there is no need for elections if his lines hold next time around, or next.

If his lines hold .....

J Lee said...

Part of the problem for Obama right now is that it's hard to be a rock star when you've got to face reality all the time, and as the No. 1 man you can only kick the can down the road for so long. It's the responsibility of being president that diminishes his glow among those who went crazy for him in 2008, because what they imagined a President Obama would do and what he has done (or can do) are two different things.

Ex-president Obama, on the other hand, is free of those responsibilities, and can go back to saying what the target audience wants to hear, just as Senator Obama did in the 2004-08 time period. He can go out after leaving the White House and rake in millions by going back to telling people what they want to hear and -- if there's a Republican in the White House -- throwing some choice pieces of red meat out there at his successor.

Just as Jimmy Carter regained some of his magic by building a few homes and channeling Ramsey Clark when it came to criticizing all of his successors, Obama can recapture the adulation of at least a segment of his fan base by going after whoever follows him into the White House and (like Carter) by pretending that all the problems during his term(s) either never happened or were somebody else's fault.

Joe said...

The moment Obama leaves office, the negative press with start. Reporters afraid to be the last to admit the truth as they know it will quickly pile on. Then years on, the historical revisionism will begin, but by then it will be too late.

(If he's like Carter, he'll then destroy whatever good will he generated in decade two of his retirement.

I would prefer he be like Reagan and the two Bushes and just fade away, but that is probably too much to hope for. Heck, even Clinton has kept to himself more than I thought he would.)

bagoh20 said...

"The thing he's best at is running for President. "

That's not saying much. I think it would have been harder for him to lose in 2008 than it was to win.

He was like a hot dog: not an impressive meal, and definitely bad if depended on for survival, but when the situation is right, it just hits the spot, and nobody really knows what's in it, or where it came from; and most don't care to know.

Beldar said...

Blessed be The One, and blessed be Jay Carney, his true prophet, but:

You're projecting a long lifespan for a life-long smoker. (May he live for 1000 years!)

Beldar said...

As a Democratic ex-president, won't he be expected to spend more quality time with Bill Clinton and Jimmy Carter?

JAL said...

UN General Secretary

Then he can write another book or two. But he has to go to Bali like he did for the first one. With Michelle.

He needs to do it quickly because Bill Ayers won't be around forever to be his "editor-in-chief." ;-)

He could have a DNA test run to see if Frank Marshall Davis is his dad and write a reveal all book about the angst of finding out he didn't have to go to Kenya after all.

cokaygne said...

He will run again and win handily. You cannot beat someone with no one. All the potential Republican candidates are losers. The best of the bad lot, Romney, cannot run against O's most unpopular policy. Huckster's Southern Baptist social issues are yesterday's issues. Idiots like Trump would not be running if there was a GOP contender with a chance of beating O.

The constitution does not require POTUS to be at his desk 9-5 M-F like everyone else. In his second term O will haunt golf courses all over the world while VP Clinton (Bill or Hill, pick one) runs the show.

Francisco D said...

Ann,

Your argument seems well reasoned. However, the American people are more likely to find out what a an incompetent tyro Obama is once he leaves office. He could wait in the wings for a disaster, but we've already seen that movie and know how it turns out.

wv = weeme, like I said ...

rdkraus said...

He'll be 54 years old, and what will he do?"


He'll be an ex-president. The best gig on earth. No actual responsibilities, and limitless money making opportunities for doing virtually no work at all.

jerryofva said...

If Libya goes south we won't be asking whether he would be better off skipping the election. We will be asking who will be the Democratic Party nominee. (No, it won't be Hillary Clinton. She dragged the one into the mess.)

Big Mike said...

I seem to have called it at 6:48 yesterday.

AprilApple said...

"... because his country longs for the golden days of 2011."


The Fannie and Freddie Democrat executives are paid millions of dollars while our economy collapses? The democrat/Union machine reveals the corrupt money laundering scheme against the middle class.
Yeah. Golden days of 2011.

Christopher in MA said...

"No thinking person will ever vote for this empty vessel again."

To paraphrase the sanctimonious fraud Adlai Stevenson - sure, but the GOP candidate needs a majority to win.

AprilApple said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AprilApple said...

The golden days of "stimulus spending"-- A scheme that removed funds from the working non-union middle class and handed those funds over to democrat donors, democrat constituencies, and unions.

What a corrupt waste.

Pilgrim said...

It's catching up with him...his legitimacy, or illegitimacy as a candidate for POTUS. Guess what, this issue will never rest till he puts up for all to see, his proof on his birthplace. Why would he go through such painstaking efforts and at an immense cost to hide his records? BO...you need to put this issue to bed once and for all by showing the American public your birth records, your original unaltered birth certificate. Just do it and be done with it! You have nothing to hide right?