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Cillizza: Can Any President Succeed Today?

From Chris Cillizza, of the Washington Post:

Can any president succeed in today’s political world?

By Chris Cillizza, Published: June 17, 2012

Lost in the chatter about whether President Obama will win a second term in November is an even bigger — and perhaps even more important — question: Is it possible for a president — any president — to succeed in the modern world of politics?

Consider this: We are in the midst of more than a decade-long streak of pessimism about the state of the country, partisanship is at all-time highs and the media have splintered — Twitter, blogs, Facebook and so on and so forth — in a thousand directions all at once

Add those three major factors up and what becomes clear is that any president elected (or reelected) this November has slim hopes — or at the most a very narrow window — for political success.

Notice how how Cillizza is talking about a "decade-long streak." He is trying to avoid the Democrats’ only President to get re-elected since FDR, the glorious Bill Clinton. You see, there was no rancorous partisanship back then.

“Due to the evolution of our politics and media, we may never see a two-term president again,” said Mark McKinnon, a senior strategist for President George W. Bush’s 2000 and 2004 campaigns.

Added Democratic strategist Chris Lehane: “In an era of high-definition politics, where every flaw is exposed; in a time where we live in Marshall McLuhan’s global community on speed; in an age where every leaf that falls is covered in some form or fashion, it is supremely challenging to effectively govern.”

What a laugh. We know nothing about Barack Obama.

News is being made — and covered — literally every minute of the day across the world and, as president, Obama is forced to read and react to virtually all of it

Layer over the constant stream of news with the fact that Twitter, blogs and cable television turn every slip of the tongue, misstatements or gaffe into a mountain — “the private sector is doing fine” being a prime, recent example — and it’s clear that the idea that the president can drive the hourly, daily or weekly message of his choosing feels outdated. The bully pulpit may still exist, but it’s far less bully than it once was.

To call Obama’s statement about the "private sector" a gaffe is yet another lie from Mr. Cillizza. If it was a gaffe Obama would have corrected it. Instead, he reiterated it. This is what he believes.

But again, it’s clear that the author is pining for a strongman, like Hugo Chavez, who can bully the country into doing his bidding without question.

That’s especially true not only because the fracturing of the media makes it hard to push a clear message but also because roughly half of the American public doesn’t want to hear the message (whatever it is) because it is of the other party.

According to a Pew Research Center study released last month, the difference between Republicans and Democrats on 48 value questions was a whopping 18 points — double the difference as recently as 1997

Isn’t that good news? Don’t people want a real choice? Otherwise, you have voters complaining that ‘there is not a dime’s worth of difference between the two parties.’ Which, of course, is what the ruling elite want, as long as the Democrats are the dominant party.

In fact, Cillizza is just showing how much he yearns for the good old days when the Republicans were the ‘go along to get along’ party.

So, what’s a president to do — since throwing up your hands and walking away is, well, not an option? According to a handful of smart Democratic and Republican strategists to whom we put that very question, the only answer — at least at the moment — is to wait and see what the November election brings

Now that is insight!

Still, this article reminds me of the debate going on among the political cognoscenti during the Carter administration. Where it was argued that the Presidency had gotten to be too big of a job for just one man. And that it should be divided between two or even three people. Oddly enough, that debate ended once Reagan was in the White House for a few weeks.

And the same thing will happen to Mr. Cillizza’s concerns if we elect a real leader and who wants to move the country in the direction that the people actually want to go.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Monday, June 18th, 2012. Comments are currently closed.

8 Responses to “Cillizza: Can Any President Succeed Today?”

  1. BigOil

    Why would Americans be pessimistic about their country? Oh…a federal government on the verge of bankruptcy, unaccountable federal agencies churning out regulations, and a tyranical President thwarting the rule of law come to mind.

    Can a President succeed? I guess it depends on your definition of success. Since the left desires a massive nanny-state government, Barry should be considered a rousing success. If success is defined as shrinking the federal government to a manageable size as laid out in the Constitution – it is hard to envision any President pulling this off. To many people still want their free stuff.

    • ” Since the left desires a massive nanny-state government, Barry should be considered a rousing success.”

      and yet his base is upset that he hasn’t done enough, hence the incredibly risky chances he’s having to take to pander for the votes of segments of the base that should normally already be his.

  2. It is your money. It is your future. It is your country. Here is what The President is doing and has done while in office for 3-1/2 years. Do you want America to fall to socialism/Marxism?

    http://moonbattery.com/?p=12978

  3. P. Aaron

    Let’s experiment: throw Scott Walker in there!

  4. canary

    “News is being made — and covered — literally every minute of the day across the world and, as president, Obama is forced to read and react to virtually all of it…

    Layer over the constant stream of news with the fact that Twitter, blogs and cable television turn every slip of the tongue, misstatements or gaffe into a mountain — …”

    Cillizza…Obama is not “…forced to read and react to virtually all of it…”

    lol. Cillizza is sure that Obama is forced to read her article where she defends him for having “beer fests”

    She and couple of others might follow Obama’s post- reality show called “Follow Obama on Twitter Show” since you want have to listen to his annoying voice; if Obama can afford to pay celebrities enough to Twitter with him.

    He did not have to have a beer fest

  5. GetBackJack

    Absolutely. A real American President who practices real American values and kicks the ass off the fake faux anchor weight of dead-zone political ticks and leeches would succeed like a house on fire.

  6. Communism has “officially” entered the United States via the White House. President Barack Obama has signed “executive privilege” to not turn over our documents, the peoples documents, to Congress. Move over Richard Nixon, your replacement has arrived and his name is Barack Obama, the Messiah and Ruler of the Land, now known as Communist America.

    The President has now shown us, the people, Democrats, Republicans and Independents that He has something to hide and was involved in this Fast & Furious cover-up. Now we all know what “flexible” and “transparency” really means.

    All Democrats who are on the House Oversight Committee and who do not support The Chairman, Darryl Issa, need to be held accountable and primaried in their re-election bids. All they are doing is “stone-walling” and placing the United States Constitution in harms way, a-la Richard Nixon and Watergate.

    Would you please support and hold Attorney General Holder and President Obama, who are hiding something from us by withholding these documents…..accountable.


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