If the polls are anything to go by, President Barack Obama’s popularity is unraveling faster than a John Edwards paternity cover-up. If you’re disinclined to believe the polls, take a gander at the gas escaping his own party’s vents. Democrats are running away from him nationwide. Even the Congressional Black Caucus has wandered off the Obama reservation. CBC Chairman Representative Emanuel Cleaver (D-Mo.) has gone so far as to suggest that if Obama were white, CBC members “…would be marching on the White House.” Now, beneath the usual liberal shrieking, a new rumble has emerged: a primary challenge to the President.
Democratic heavyweight Michael Moore was the first to take aim at the Obama Presidency when he began screeching for a Matt Damon candidacy, but those two are as much a threat to mount a real campaign as a Krispy Kreme glazed donut is to escape Moore’s greasy fingers. Ralph Nader popped up next, although Ralph has already crossed the electoral Rubicon between “A Campaign of Liberal Outrage” and “Lyndon LaRouche.” Just last week, The Chicago Tribune suggested Obama should spike his candidacy and spend the next four years “…on a Hawaiian beach, wrestling the cap off a Corona.”
As brutal as it must have been for Obama to find out his hometown paper just suggested the Cubs are a safer bet for the World Series than he is for re-election, imagine how galling it must have been to find out that in his stead, they’re pushing the woman who took him the full 15 rounds in 2008: current Secretary of State and eternal Secretary of “I’m not running, honest!” Hillary Rodham Clinton. Even Obama’s sock puppet Jay Carney is sweating over the specter of Hillary 2012. Asked about it at a recent press briefing, Carney responded: “You’ll have to ask her.”
A caveat: If Obama 2012 is a slow horse, Hillary 2012 is headed to the glue factory. Obviously, Bill Clinton would be consumed with joy over the idea of a Hillary Presidency. “She’s going to be busy for at least four years, right? What’s Denise Rich’s cell number?” But the rest of America would be less excited. Consider it: The window is closing rapidly on Sarah Palin, and there are actually people who like her. Compared to Sarah Palin, Hillary Clinton is — well — Hillary Clinton. It’s not as if 1994 is ancient history. Of course we remember HillaryCare, Whitewater and Vince Foster; we’re the Vast Right Wing Conspiracy! What are the odds America, which is getting sweaty palms thinking about showing Obama the door next fall, will consider Clinton? Talk about a short in the Democratic National Committee’s logic circuits: “Let’s offer them the same thing as Obama; but more Ministry of Fear-ish.”
Then there’s the dreaded “Ted Kennedy effect.” Jimmy Carter could hardly have avoided playing the bug to the Reagan 1980 windshield (a lesson Carter’s Vice President, Walter Mondale, clearly missed in loser class). People wanted to like Teddy. He reminded them of his brothers, but with a glandular disorder. He looked like a Kennedy — or perhaps he looked like he might have eaten one or two of them. Were it not for that unfortunate business in which he left another human being to drown in a car, he might have had a real shot. Instead, he split the Democrats and left Carter gasping for air after the election.
Pity our poor President Obama. The Messiah of Grant Park just can’t get a leg up. Whether it’s economic woes thanks to his Keynesian “spray and pray” approach, foreign entanglements (we’re still in Iraq, we’re still in Afghanistan, and it would appear Obama’s promise to extricate us from Libya was as truthful as Charlie Rangel’s property tax filings) or diplomatic stumbles (talk to the hand, Mongolian President Tsakhia Elbegdorj!), Obama has fumbled the Presidential ball and kicked it all over the field. Pity further the Democrats. Among those who could reasonably garner enough support to be nominated, Obama is actually the best they’ve got. But save your most bitter tears for America; for allowing these cretins into the conversation.