Monday, September 17, 2012

Will voters make history again in the 2012 U.S. election?

In my last post, I said that the Clinton speech would help Obama, and boost him in the polls by 5% or more. Well, a CNN poll a few days later had indeed reported a relatively huge gain by the Democrats after their convention. Before the Democratic National Convention, the Democrats were at 50%, and in the post convention poll, they were at 59%. Since then, Obama has pulled ahead in swing states like Ohio.

Obama could very well make history again when the final results are in, by being the first president who won an election with an unemployment rate of 8% or higher. No president was re-elected with this status before.

However, it seems that there is either a lingering mistrust of Romney, and a perception of him not really relating to the average middle class Joe. Or, there is a broader understanding that the economic problems inherited by Obama, could not be, as Bill Clinton said at the Democratic convention last week, solved in four years by any president including himself. Or, both.

As well, while each campaign stretches or distort the truth to different extents, Obama is at least attempting to appear the honest and diligent choice. In an interview some days ago, he told a reporter that he is aware of his own short-comings, referring to the sluggish economic rebound, not the one he had hoped for.

Politically he should have the support of a sizable chunk of a number of major groups - African Americans 90+% support, women (with his abortion stand), gays (with his support of their marriage), and the Latino vote. At the Democratic National Convention, there were a number of Latino speakers, including a rising star in California, San Antonio Mayor, Julian Castro, and his twin Joaquin Castro, representative from Texas, so he is covering that base.

Bill Clinton was strong at the convention, telling Americans, that no matter who was president, no one could clear it up in one term. So with this support, and the possible new perspective of what the economy was like, and how slowly it is rebounding, voters at this point seem to be still willing to give Obama a second term.

He is likeable, and perhaps many voters appreciate that as the first black President, his sense of place in history, Obama will serve with integrity, and accept his human limitations.. and in doing so, realize that the opponent Romney, also has his limitations, and weaknesses. It's getting more interesting.

History can be made again. From this blogger's chair, there is a sense that people are becoming more aware of a broader economic picture of the recession that welcomed the Obama administration, and willing once again to evolve as voters in understanding economic and recovery perspective.

Thursday, September 06, 2012

Clinton's Captivating Speech Could Re-elect Obama

Even if Bill Clinton had not been a successful president himself, the masterful speech he delivered last night will boost Obama's support, lessen Romney's and more likely re-elect the incumbent. Clinton's piece by piece analysis and perspective of the situation Obama inherited, and his subsequent economic efforts and achievements, were a huge part of the former president's sales pitch.

It was also his delivery, sometimes succinct, and folksy style of wording, where people not only understood, but could take it home, and talk about it, and believe it. He could drill down on details, and yet simplify for a broader understanding. It was spellbinding to watch. President Obama's record could not have gotten a more believable and superior endorsement. Clinton's delivery will certainly be studied in future university text books.

His mastery of political perspective, and especially presidencies since Reagan's time, gave him the apparent ease, persuasiveness, and indisputable story lines that simply stand out and above any speaker in the DNC or GOP national conventions. His speech approach was delivered in a way that the listener was convinced that this man was sincere, exceptionally well informed, and understandable. Much of it was understandable because President Clinton, could look at the larger picture, and sum it up in simplified ways. For example, when describing the Republican's pitch to voters, he put it this way.
"Now you gotta listen to this. They said that Obama received a mess, he did not solve it fast enough, so elect us back in."

This was after telling the audience that the eight years of Republican leadership was largely to blame for the mess that Obama inherited. Clinton's point was sharp, simple, and memorable.

Every word that he spoke captivated the audience in the auditorium, and they often responded with exuberant cheers and applause. Clinton's gauging of the audiences' excitement and noise, was thoughtfully built in to his delivery. He made sure that they were not going to miss anything he said. For example, he would say, "Now you gotta listen to this," or, "I want you to listen to me." It had the effect of convincing the audience of his own self-confidence, his conviction in the facts he was about to say, and his commanding authority to speak about Obama's record, and Republican contributions in causing the economic crisis.

Clinton also, piece by piece, refuted major claims made last week at their national convention, against President Obama. He made the Republicans look terrible, misleading, and simply, the wrong party to vote for.

The job of Obama in his speech tonight should be that much easier because Bill Clinton covered much already. It should be easier if Obama can now present a more detailed, plausible and persuasive economic plan for the next four years, and also, expand on the themes from the last two nights of speeches on creating more opportunities for the middle class and youth, and investing in broader health coverage.

The pressure is on, and he has to connect with listeners, and give a clear vision of what they can expect. His speech has to be remembered. Two nights ago First Lady Michelle Obama gave a tremendous speech about her husband, which could win some voters. Bill Clinton made history with his speech, and supreme support for re-electing Obama. It is being hailed by veteran political analysts as the greatest he has ever delivered. Tonight, it will add to the challenge of President Obama, to give a memorable, hopeful, constructive speech, that is his own, and that will linger in the minds of the electorate.