June 4, 2012

"Should President Obama have gone to Wisconsin?"

Asks WaPo's Chris Cillizza:
The majority of Democratic strategists we spoke to over the weekend, however, insisted that the combination of Obama’s personality (and that of his political team) as well as the unique dynamics in the Badger State lessened not only the likelihood of a presidential visit but also its potential efficacy.

“If a recall race becomes purely partisan, there is a strong backlash from independents,” said Steve Murphy, a leading Democratic media consultant. “Obama was smart to stay away, for both himself and Barrett.”
That's too vague. What's wrong with "Obama's personality" (and the "personality" of his "team") that  would have been bad for Barrett?

Another Democratic operative who was granted anonymity to speak candidly about strategy said that polling suggests “Barrett’s problem is is white men, lots of them union members, and Obama doesn’t cut much ice there.”
Thanks, anonymous Democrat. Thanks for the insight. Obama shied away from Wisconsin because of the white men. But I thought it was all about turnout. His lack of ice-cutting with white men wouldn't have prevented him from stimulating the women and minorities.
“Everyone knows how risk averse Obama is,” said a senior party strategist. “At least he’s consistent.”... 
In the end, Obama, like all of us, is shaped by his own experiences. And roughly two years ago, Obama gave in to pleas for him to make a last-minute campaign stop for Massachusetts Attorney General Martha Coakley (D), who was struggling to hold the seat of the late Sen. Ted Kennedy. Obama’s trip changed nothing. Coakley lost to now-Sen. Scott Brown (R), and the president had to endure a series of stories about whether he had lost his mojo.

Seen through that lens, Wisconsin looks like a no-win situation for Obama. As one Democratic consultant closely following the race put it: “From his point of view, (there’s) not much to gain and something to lose.”
So, basically, don't help Democrats who need help. Stop by for some win when they are already winning. But I'm not going to criticize Obama for not associating himself with the recall calamity. It's enough to hide the anger that surely must be there about the way the Wisconsin recall is hogging the political spotlight, draining donation money that might have gone elsewhere, and providing a ripe opportunity for advertising the success of conservative policy.

49 comments:

Matthew Sablan said...

“Everyone knows how risk averse Obama is,” said a senior party strategist. “At least he’s consistent.”

-- That's awfully faint praise to be damned by.

Scott Walker's Love Child said...

Martha Coakley, Creigh Deeds, Jon Corzine. Obama backed a string of losers in 2010.

ricpic said...

God forbid any Democrat would admit the problem the party is having with voters is that it is seen as the party of THEFT. No, it has to be about race. Good, let the Dems believe that and run on that and have their heads handed to them.

traditionalguy said...

The successful trial lawyer usually will only take the cases he expects to win. Losing one can seriously impair his reputation for being better than the rest.

But Barack has already joined the Wisconsin Dems trial team. And the only major sin a trial lawyer can commit is failing to show up in Court.

But then Barack I thinks that he is an Emperor, not a mere American style President who is facing his own recall election in November.

Jay said...

insisted that the combination of Obama’s personality

So 2008.

Wake up dude, Obama isn't personally popular given how many people keep voting against his party, of which he is the titular head.

edutcher said...

Love Child said it.

Barry's the Kiss of Death, much like Willie.

(funny how that works)

YoungHegelian said...

The Obama Team has been always about Team Obama, and everyone else can just go hang.

When they were flush with cash in 2008, do you think they passed out any of the $750M largesse to help their fellow Democrats in need?

No, Buttercup, they did not, in spite of multiple entreaties from within the DNC to do so.

Any Dem who thinks he's even going to get the time of day from the Obama campaign needs to have his head examined.

Scott M said...

POTUS doesn't have time for trips to Wisconsin to settle purely local problems that have no bearing nationally...Debbie WS told us so.

Besides, he's too busy playing golf, raising funds for his upcoming defeat, and keeping his cabinet members from coming to blows.

Robert said...

Look at the photo. There's Walker, pointing his finger at Obama.

Governors just can't help pointing out incompetence.

The Drill SGT said...

Beyond everything else said above.

All you locals tell me how:

"I'm from Chicago, and I'm here to help"

would play in WI

Chicago

Calypso Facto said...

wouldn't have prevent (sic) him from stimulating the women

Stimulating the women is Bill Clinton's job, hence his stand-in for Obama.

t-man said...

Yes, Obama should have gone to Wisconsin. He should have picked out a nice house in Bayfield, announced his retirement, and disappeared from public life.

Seeing Red said...

No teh won is going to sing so we can keep paying for his arugula supper?

What's next, barker at a carnival?

Via Drudge:

OBAMA TO SING AT B'WAY THEATER FOR CASH...

theMickey's said...

Like you said somewhere else-ski, Obama aint gonna touch this w/ a ten foot pole..

Mary Beth said...

What's wrong with "Obama's personality" (and the "personality" of his "team") that would have been bad for Barrett?

They want to win, everyone else be damned?

******
After I wrote that I Googled "Obama generous". The results weren't pretty. Most of the first page of results is about how he's generous with other people's money.

David said...

Obama is risk adverse in the sense that he has to win. If he does not think he's going to win, he stays personally distant.

The exception to this was running for President in the first place. It's a big exception, but he did not learn from the experience.

David said...

Meade's point at Isthmus yesterday that with really strong leadership, Obama could have quashed the Wisconsin recall. He would have had to twist some arms in the Union leaderships and annoyed some local wahoos, but he could have pulled it off. I agree with that point. For Obama to "hide his anger" now is pretty lame.

Michael K said...

Obama does better when the fix is in. LIke when Emil Jones said, "i'm gonna make me a Senator."

it took some rewriting of history to get his career going.

It’s a lengthy record filled with core liberal issues. But what’s interesting, and almost never discussed, is that he built his entire legislative record in Illinois in a single year.

Republicans controlled the Illinois General Assembly for six years of Obama’s seven-year tenure. Each session, Obama backed legislation that went nowhere; bill after bill died in committee. During those six years, Obama, too, would have had difficulty naming any legislative ­achievements.

Then, in 2002, dissatisfaction with President Bush and Republicans on the national and local levels led to a Democratic sweep of nearly every lever of Illinois state government. For the first time in 26 years, Illinois Democrats controlled the governor’s office as well as both legislative chambers.

The white, race-baiting, hard-right Republican Illinois Senate Majority Leader James “Pate” Philip was replaced by Emil Jones Jr., a gravel-voiced, dark-skinned African-American known for chain-smoking cigarettes on the Senate floor.

Jones had served in the Illinois Legislature for three decades. He represented a district on the Chicago South Side not far from Obama’s. He became Obama’s ­kingmaker.

Several months before Obama announced his U.S. Senate bid, Jones called his old friend Cliff Kelley, a former Chicago alderman who now hosts the city’s most popular black call-in radio ­program.

I called Kelley last week and he recollected the private conversation as follows:

“He said, ‘Cliff, I’m gonna make me a U.S. Senator.’”

“Oh, you are? Who might that be?”

“Barack Obama.”


Read the rest. It’s interesting. He is a made man in the truest sense of the term. Also, the 2002 event that changed Illinois politics was the drivers’ license scandal that drove the governor from office.

Jason said...

Most everyone knows now that Obama is merely an empty suit and is full of shit. That's why he didnt go.

Why actually work when you have a busy day of 6 fundraisers on your plate?

cubanbob said...

Obama has a big enough losing streak to know that he doesn't need another loss tied to him. We will know Wednesday the outcome and if Walker survives its bad new for democrats nationally. The one thing the WI union schmucks don't get is that if Walker wins not only does that embolden governors accross to reign in the public sector unions but if Romney and the republicans win in November it will embolden them to do so at the national level.

elkh1 said...

“If a recall race becomes purely partisan..."

"If"? "becomes"?

The whole damn thing is partisan from the get-go.

elkh1 said...

“Barrett’s problem is in white men, lots of them union members, and Obama doesn’t cut much ice there.”

Those racist white union members would rather have Walker gutted their unions than voted for a white man supported by a black-white president whom they voted for almost four years ago one Nov. morning when they woke up color-blinded. Or, they have voted for the white half of the black-white candidate who has turned totally black as president?

John Stodder said...

For his own sake, Obama probably should have fought for the recall, since I think his view of the world, and of government, is expressed by it. He is essentially leaving his own troops undefended, and I think that primal failing will hurt him among all voters, not just the left. You don't leave your army in the field with no cover. He could have raised money, bought and spoken in ads, and spent 5-6 days campaigning the state and it probably would have made a difference.

chickelit said...

Obama's political aversion to stepping into Wisconsin has nothing to do with race. Rather, he is, to some, independents especially, too closely allied with Chicago politics. An even worse face would be Rahm Emanuel.

Wisconsin Dems and independents see lots of intrinsic corruption in Chicago-style politics. Another demerit is Obama's ties to out-of-state organized labor. Witness the catastrophic fail of Tromka's verbal threats to Walker.

OTOH, were Walker to prevail, Omaba could potentially gain a lot of goodwill for the fall by trying to sooth his own seething supporters.

Stand with Walker and walk with standards.

Jeff in Oklahoma said...

Obama taking a big hit in the last month at Intrade:


https://data.intrade.com/graphing/jsp/closingPricesForm.jsp?contractId=743474&tradeURL=https://www.intrade.com

TMink said...

Our President is too quick to throw people under the bus to get involved in the stink show the Democrats have going on up there. Let Bill put his neck out, if Walker wins as expected, that hurts the Clintons and that (in his mind) helps Obama.

No upside for an unpopular President to campaign for an unpopular candidate.

Trey

Methadras said...

If Urkel could send Axeldouche to Massachusetts then he could send Eric Holder to Wisconsin. Then they could butt chests from a thousand miles away.

Methadras said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Andy Freeman said...

Obama's problem may be that he and his supporters think that he's likeable when he really isn't.

He seems to be the "I want to like him but just can't/don't." type.

Scott M said...

Obama's problem may be that he and his supporters think that he's likeable when he really isn't.

This would fit into the "Obama's problem is that he doesn't know what he doesn't know" which is a very bad attribute to possess.

The Drill SGT said...

Scott M said...
This would fit into the "Obama's problem is that he doesn't know what he doesn't know" which is a very bad attribute to possess.


Or worse, doesnt know that he doesn't know, what he doesn't know, e.g.

overwhelming, delusional overconfidence :)


Scott and I both come from military backgrounds where considering and planning for unk unks is a part of survival. The ways are multitude, but the easiest are:

1. keep a reserve
2. consider, if things are going too well, it's a trap :)
3. planning your operation with mid-stage decsion points where you can shift from offense to defense, etc

Roger J. said...

To add to my fellow armor file, Drill Sgt's list: never burn a bridge you might have to cross later when things go south.

My take is that the internal dem polling in WI is showing an electoral disaster for the dems. No doubt team Obama reads those polls. While I dont give Mr Obama much credit for smarts, given his track record of supporting losers has tempered his willingness to jump into a losing cause.

traditionalguy said...

In 2008 all of the Dems expected to run Hillary. She was a sure thing for the nomination, but she ran into a strong storm of Hatred for that woman/bitch.

Edwards became the the dark horse moving up to take over from Hillary and win.

And then Barack (who?) Obama went straight to the top. But why?

Today's comments say that super cautious Barack would never have acted without the knowledge that the fix was in for him.

In a few weeks in early 2008 Hillary crashed, Edwards withdrew, and Mr Unqualified was anointed as the winner.

Even that would have been a useless act unless the same movers of events on the world scene knew the USA's 8 year old bubble economy could be torpedoed on a chosen date as the October surprise.

So who arranged all of this? Assuming for argument that God is not real, some very smart folks did that.

And WTF are Bilderbergers?

Jay said...

Scott M said...


This would fit into the "Obama's problem is that he doesn't know what he doesn't know" which is a very bad attribute to possess.


Ding, ding, ding, ding, ding!

Give that man a cigar...

Tom said...

Our beloved pres is a no water in my end of the boat guy.

Larry J said...

What's wrong with "Obama's personality" (and the "personality" of his "team") that would have been bad for Barrett?

You mean besides Obama being a flaming narcissistic asshole?

Nothing much.

Calypso Facto said...

Or maybe he stayed away because he didn't want to be tarred with any fallout from the DOJ monitors in town to fix the Milwaukee election results.

"DOJ dispatches federal monitors to Milwaukee for Tuesday election"

Steve Koch said...

TradGuy,

The lefty media torpedoed Hillary because they wanted to get the first black white guy elected prez.

As far as the perfect timing for popping the bubble, my guess is Soros since he had the knowledge, the ability, the money, and the motivation to do it. Too bad Bush II didn't have somebody investigate it and publish the results before he split.

Roger J. said...

Praise Gaia--DOJ monitors--hope those bastards do a better job in Milwaukee than they did in Philadelphia--I mean what can go wrong?

purplepenquin said...

Didn't the President visit Wisconsin a couple months ago? I remember how upset some right-wingers were about him appearing with a "union" flag waving behind him.

alan markus said...

Didn't the President visit Wisconsin a couple months ago? I remember how upset some right-wingers were about him appearing with a "union" flag waving behind him.

You don't remember if he visited a couple months ago, but you do remember right-wingers being upset about it?

m stone said...

Penquin: Obama did visit Wis in March.

It was not a union flag.behind him. It was the state flag with year of admission (1847) misinterpreted by some ignorant press people as the local union.

purplepenquin said...

You don't remember if he visited a couple months ago, but you do remember right-wingers being upset about it?

I remembered that he was here, but not sure when it happened.

t was not a union flag behind him. It was the state flag with year of admission (1847) misinterpreted by some ignorant press people as the local union

Yeah, I remember that part too. ;)

JAL said...

It was not a union flag.behind him. It was the state flag with year of admission (1847) misinterpreted by some ignorant press people as the local union.

I think I recall BHO made the comment about the state flag being a union flag. He didn't recognize it as the flag of one of the 57 states.

purplepenquin said...

I think I recall BHO made the comment about the state flag being a union flag

You must have got one of the emails that was sent out right afterwards.

I gotta admit, that was some good work by whatever right-wing spin machine first put it into motion. Now whenever it comes up in convo some folks honestly think that it was Obama who made the gaffe and the other person heard it wrong.

purplepenquin said...

(1847)

Oops....1848

chickelit said...

Oops....1848

I thought of making that correction hours ago but I wanted to see who was for real and who was not.

Don't Tread 2012 said...

“Obama was smart to stay away, for both himself and Barrett.”

"Barrett was smart to not seek the support of the radioactive Obama, despite already long odds."

//fixed

Don't Tread 2012 said...

"Didn't the President visit Wisconsin a couple months ago? I remember how upset some right-wingers were about him appearing with a "union" flag waving behind him.

You don't remember if he visited a couple months ago, but you do remember right-wingers being upset about it?"

Yeah, president Partiality and Fairness showed up to punk the populace. All this shameless support for unions demonstrates his amateur status. Don't mistake disgust and bewilderment for being 'upset'.