Barack Obama: GOP Man of the Year
By Michael M. Bates
It wasn't so long ago that the Grand Old Party was rapidly headed toward becoming the Grand Dead Party. Democratic victories in the House, the Senate, state capitols and, of course, the White House made it disheartening for those who subscribe to archaic concepts like limited government, a modicum of fiscal prudence and the Constitution.
But those Democratic victories, ironically, also brought new hope for Republicans. From humble and shadowy beginnings came a community organizer with the thinnest résumé this side of Paris Hilton's. Yes, Barack Hussein Obama may well prove to be the GOP's savior.
Look at all he's accomplished thus far. When a Democratic congressman expressed his trepidation that 2010 could be a big Republican year like 1994 was, in his customary, diffidently humble way Obama said, "Well, the big difference here and in '94 was you've got me."
That's for sure. President Obama campaigned enthusiastically for Democratic gubernatorial candidates in New Jersey and Virginia. Both lost.
In January, he campaigned for the Massachusetts Democratic senatorial candidate. So blue is Massachusetts, it was the only state won by George McGovern. Yet the home of Teddy Kennedy and Barney Frank elected a Republican to the Senate for the first time since 1972 after being treated to the Obama magic.
Today, many Democrats running for Congress are scampering from The Anointed One like Dracula hoofing it away from a crucifix. An endorsement from Rod Blagojevich would be as welcome.
"This is what change looks like," Obama declared moments after Democrats passed his version of health care. The problem for him and his party is that wasn't the change Americans wanted. So Democratic congressmen and senators started avoiding town hall meetings or any other forum in which citizens could voice their disapproval. This isn't the way to develop a reputation for political courage and voters have a malevolent tendency to remember such spinelessness.
A handful of Democrats who voted against Obama's plan are bragging about it. One is running an ad that states that when Obama and Nancy Pelosi pressured him on health care and other issues, he "stood up to them and voted no."
Most Democrats can't make a similar claim. So for them, it's "Health care? We don't know nuthin' about no health care."
As unpopular as Barry is because of his socialized medicine scheme, he's in even hotter water on the economy. A recent CBS/New York Times poll pegs Obama's approval rating on the economy at 41 percent. Additionally, more Americans disapprove of his overall job performance than approve.
The thrill is clearly gone. Look at all Obama's done to help the GOP. Gallup has conducted generic ballot polling since 1942. People are asked who they would vote for: An unnamed Republican or an unnamed Democrat. In August, Gallup reported that Republicans took an unprecedented lead: "The 10-percentage-point lead is the GOP's largest so far this year and is its largest in Gallup's history of tracking the midterm generic ballot for Congress."
That level of advantage probably can't be maintained. But this week a Rasmussen poll found Republican candidates still hold a nine-point lead over Democrats.
Then there is this year's turnout in the primaries. According to the Center for the Study of the American Electorate at American University, involvement in Republican contests far exceeded that in Democratic ones. Over four million more Republicans voted than Democrats.
What's notable is that this isn't usually what happens. Indeed, this is the first time since 1930 that the GOP had a higher turnout.
Still Barry continues working on boosting the Republican vote. Most recently, he's enthusiastically backing the DREAM Act, yet another attempt to grant amnesty to illegal aliens. Obama said in a speech week: ". . . I will do whatever it takes to support the Congressional Hispanic Caucus' efforts to pass this bill so that I can sign it into law. . ." That should really endear him to the folks who don't use politically-correct terms like "undocumented worker."
OK, so BO didn't deliver on his promises about millions of jobs, and the rise of the oceans beginning to slow, and healing the planet and all that other stuff. No one but the zombie-like Flavor Aid drinkers believed it in the first place.
What matters is that Obama has recruited more people into the Republican Party than anyone since Ronald Reagan. Sure, there are RINOs still around, but by and large the Republican Party is the conservative party. This November we'll actually get some hope and change.
Barry, they couldn't have done it without you. Thanks for all your hard work. Take another vacation. You deserve it.
Michael M. Bates is a regular contributor to Enter Stage Right. His web site can be found at http://www.michaelmbates.com/.