Obama’s reelection means that his will be a consequential presidency

posted at 9:21 am on November 7, 2012 by Erika Johnsen

I’m still collecting my thoughts on what we saw happen last night, and probably will be for awhile yet — in the coming days, there will be tons of analysis and data-crunching and commentary that we’ll all be trying to decipher. But, in the meantime, there’s at least some small sense I can make of this, and funnily enough, it was Rachel Maddow who I first heard elucidate my approximate point on MSNBC shortly after we all figured out that we are indeed in for four more years of Barack Obama.

I would also just like to, point of privilege, to say, that this is an important moment for policy. This was a consequential presidency, not just because Barack Obama was the first African-American president, and not just because the country turned to the Democratic party after eight years of George Bush and Dick Cheney — this is a consequential president in terms of policy. In terms of civil-rights matters, … in terms of economic policy like the stimulus, in terms of historic, historic change like health reform, and like some of the other reform, Wall Street reform, credit card reform, student loan reform measures, that this president was able to pass. … Had this president been a one-term president, those policies would have been dialed back, along with the rest of his legacy. Those policies will now be held onto in this country as we experience what is almost an inevitable economic rebound that would’ve happened with anybody as president… as the economy gets better, those policies will be in place, and they will become part of the new normal in America.

It’s a pretty difficult job to hold back economic rebounds and growth in America, but somehow, President Obama managed it. He spent trillions of dollars we don’t have on boosting the economy, but unemployment is almost precisely what it was when he got started — talk about results. But, being prosperous and productive and innovative is what Americans do best, and no matter the obstacles, we’ve still got that hard-working, profit-seeking fire in our collective belly.

As American businesses and entrepreneurs start to internalize the fact that they are now inevitably going to have to cope with the coming onslaught of regulations, taxes, and rules that will become the new normal, the economy may improve — but Barack Obama’s agenda means that it will come at the opportunity cost of economic growth that could have been faster, more robust, and would have led to much more wealth and prosperity than what we’ll be getting. Even as we begin to divert ever-more of our economy’s time, resources, manpower, effort, energies, and money toward complying with and paying for more bureaucracy and top-down control, the economy may continue to limp along, but at the expense of a vastly shrunken pie.

So, as Maddow points out, Barack Obama’s will be a consequential presidency, and not just for the “historic” reasons that were lauded after his first election. His major policies are now here to stay, and even if 2016 is a better year for the GOP, it will be next to impossible to undo what we’ll now spend the next four years implementing. This also means that “inherited problems” excuse is not going to fly anymore — this time four years from now, Barack Obama will have a much more difficult time avoiding accountability for our economic stagnation (although I wouldn’t underestimate him — the Congressional-gridlock excuse is still on tap), and if the rate at which this supposed economic rebound is taking place continues to look so very historic in that it’s happening at less than a snail’s pace, maybe we’ll collectively start catching the drift of who’s fault it really is.

Maybe it has to get still worse before it can get better, friends.


Related Posts:

Breaking on Hot Air

Blowback

Note from Hot Air management: This section is for comments from Hot Air's community of registered readers. Please don't assume that Hot Air management agrees with or otherwise endorses any particular comment just because we let it stand. A reminder: Anyone who fails to comply with our terms of use may lose their posting privilege.

Trackbacks/Pings

Trackback URL

Comments

Comment pages: 1 2 3

Those policies will now be held onto in this country as we experience what is almost an inevitable economic rebound that would’ve happened with anybody as president… as the economy gets better, those policies will be in place, and they will become part of the new normal in America.

Don’t count on it… Obama has been stopping the “inevitable” for years now, and I have “faith” that he will be able to continue stopping economic recovery or growth for another four years.

Get used to calling 150-170K jobs and 1.5% “growth” before inflation “recovery”. Get used to pretending that food & fuel aren’t part of inflation aren’t anything people actually use or buy.

Get ready for massive price spikes in health care, energy, and increased taxes.

And then wonder in four years if Biden can run on going “forward” because after 8 years we’re really almost maybe closing in an a recovery… someday.

Get used to these words, you’ll have to use them soon enough “this is the best we can hope for; this is the new normal”.

And don’t be surprised when this “inevitable” speech is thrown back at you for your hackery and cluelessness.

gekkobear on November 7, 2012 at 1:36 PM

After our military is reduced we may see a foreign invasion. Stock and lock.

Kissmygrits on November 7, 2012 at 11:04 AM

I hate to tell you this, but we’ve already been invaded from the south for the past 30 years. Each year they send in more occupiers.

PrettyD_Vicious on November 7, 2012 at 1:45 PM

Although I say it is about the pot, too, you get the basis of it. Mimzey doesn’t.

Anti-Control on November 7, 2012 at 1:09 PM

Actually I do.
My point was that it will be so far down the level of priority when the crap starts to ooze that it will be right up there with pushing hydrogen cars. Remember how important that was a few years ago?

Mimzey on November 7, 2012 at 2:01 PM

If the Obama EPA gets its way there won’t be any rebound. High energy costs will drive a lot of heavy industry out of the country and suck up consumers’ disposable income.

Charlemagne on November 7, 2012 at 9:34 AM

If??…it’s a lock now with no way of stopping it.

Mimzey on November 7, 2012 at 2:05 PM

I still can’t quite put the numbers in line.
RR got 2 million fewer votes than McCain?…Reeeally?
Obama got 10 million fewer votes…and still won??
Whats wrong with this picture? RR compaign was the inverse of McCains. McCain started to rally and then fizzled…RR started slow and then exploded.
How can they have gotten 2 million fewer votes?
Mimzey on November 7, 2012 at 12:22 PM

I had the same question, so I ran some numbers.
(If my math is off, well, it was a late night.)

Can’t imbed a table and pics here, but Wikipedia has the numbers. This is for 2012, but you can ‘back up’ to 2008 in the sidebar.

The problem comes because Florida is still out, so their totals have not yet been included in either the EV or PV.

FL has 29 EV, with approximately 12m registered voters and about 8.27m have voted, almost exactly evenly split last time I looked.
(Trust Florida to keep the election unsettled for as long as possible!)

Obama 2008 PV 69,456,897 EV 365
McCain 2008 PV 59,934,814 EV 173
WITHOUT FLORIDA
Obama 2012 PV 60,048,411 EV 303 (332 WITH FL)
Romney 2012 PV 57,368,285 EV 206 (235 WITH FL)
EST PV IF EVENLY SPLIT IN FLORIDA (4.13m each)
Obama PV 64,180,000 (under his 2008 total)
Romney PV 61,500,000 (over McCain’s 2008 total)

Even if Obama took all of Florida’s 8m votes, he would not reach his 2008 PV totals; he still can’t better his 2008 EV.
Romney, with or without Florida, bettered McCain’s Electoral Votes and added 2 states.

Anecdotes are that many on both sides stayed home.

My take (and I have seen one or more points argued elsewhere, pro and con) is that (1) the Democratic leadership and the most prominent media obscured or derailed or lied about too many economic conditions and policy decisions for the opposition to switch enough voters; (2) the GOP, even with attractive minority candidates and spokespersons, has too much “anti-minority baggage” (fairly laden or not, and mostly not) to attract the conservative minority vote (despite late-breaking statements from black leaders rebuking Obama, they didn’t promote voting for Romney); (3)the Evangelical and Catholic leaders took too long to throw in with the Mormon candidate / Republican Party, long after there was enough time to actually turn the dreadnought to another heading.

AesopFan on November 7, 2012 at 2:13 PM

AesopFan on November 7, 2012 at 2:13 PM

Thanks for the info and link!

In all of your 3 scenarios the mechanics seem to revolve around this concept:

Country doesn’t matter.
My special interests and bias does….whats in it for ME.
Oh..and blatant lies.

Mimzey on November 7, 2012 at 2:26 PM

avgjo on November 7, 2012 at 10:18 AM

This!!!

AH_C on November 7, 2012 at 2:29 PM

Actually I do.
My point was that it will be so far down the level of priority when the crap starts to ooze that it will be right up there with pushing hydrogen cars. Remember how important that was a few years ago?

Mimzey on November 7, 2012 at 2:01 PM

Actually, you don’t. Our disagreement about this led me to make that friendly bet with you.

You don’t believe 0dumba and Holder are going to do anything significant about WA’s and CO’s legalization in the near future, and I say that they will, in large part due to their controlling natures – I don’t believe 0dumba won’t be rolling over on this, and you believe he’ll let it go. We’ll see who ends up being right about this, won’t we? :)

Anti-Control on November 7, 2012 at 2:35 PM

Obama doesn’t want to create jobs: he wants to create more welfare recipients; more illegals; a permanent underclass that will vote Democrat in every election.

Anybody on the way up, a promising entrepreneur, will most likely leave this country for greener pastures. I think we currently rank 18th in the world in economic freedom. Even Red China is a better place to do business than the United States. THAT’S the new norm.

TarheelBen on November 7, 2012 at 2:36 PM

I don’t believe 0dumba won’t be rolling over on this

Anti-Control on November 7, 2012 at 2:35 PM

Fixed.

Anti-Control on November 7, 2012 at 2:44 PM

I say give the POS everything he wants, everything and then some. Let the whole damn thing collapse so we can finally fix it.

bgibbs1000 on November 7, 2012 at 9:37 AM

I agree. If the House stands up to Barry now, it is THEY who will be blamed for the coming crises. Let’s let him go ahead and raise the upper tax rates to 75%; double the capital gains tax; apply a tax on carbon dioxide; and whatever other destructive policies he wants to do. Let the whole damn thing crash.

TarheelBen on November 7, 2012 at 2:55 PM

Comment pages: 1 2 3