The “Do Nothing” Congress will be in recess for the month of August, so I am using this time to go on a little (political) recess myself. So, as we reach half-time of the Presidential election I decided to write a bog on the state of the race. Also, be sure to check out my past blog post in my absence.
The 2012 presidential race is as close as everyone predicated and with less than 100 days to go the remainder of the race promises to be just as close. The latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll has the race 49% for Obama to 43% for Romney. As of right now they are 9 Battle Ground States (Florida, North Carolina, Ohio, Virginia, Colorado, Pennsylvania, Iowa, Nevada, and Ohio) the majority of ads and candidate appearances will take place in those nine states. Here are the latest poll averages from those states:
Governor Mitt Romney recently finished up a three country foreign trip meant to bolster his foreign policy credentials, but he ended up committing a series of gaffes from questioning the preparations of the London Olympics to insulting the Palestinians, but Romney is poised to have a good August with the selection of his Vice Presidential Nominee and Republican National Convention.
I predict Governor Romney will choose Senator Rob Portman of Ohio for his Vice President, Portman is a safe choice plus his home state is Ohio which Romney needs to win if he is to win in November. The Republican National Convention will take place in Tampa Bay, Florida, from August 27th to the 30th.
Romney will use the month of August to try and define himself after questions were raised by Democrats regarding his tenure at Bain Capital and his unwillingness to release his tax returns. Romney and his allies’ definitely have the money, they have out raised President Obama and the Democrats over the last two months and will put that money to use in an effort to tear President Obama down and present Romney as an adequate alternative.
Romney’s problem is his likeability, voters do not like him and he has been vague on policy. Romney’s strategy is to blame the sluggish economy on President Obama and hope that is enough for voters to elect him. Romney supports the Ryan Budget which would make massive cuts in domestic spending including eliminating nutritional food programs for children, eliminating the Pell Grant, and turning Medicare into a voucher program. Romney also refuses to release more than two years of tax returns, because there is a possibility he has paid little to no income taxes over the last ten years, those tax issues along with bank accounts in Bermuda and The Cayman Islands suggest Romney is hiding something. Romney is depending on a sluggish economy to propel him to the White House because his policies won’t get him there.
President Obama is facing some serious headwinds, no President since Franklin Roosevelt has had to confront so many challenging issues like Obama has. President Obama will use the month of August to fundraise (he needs the money) and preparing for the fall election. The Democratic National Convention will be held in Charlotte, North Carolina from September 3rd to 6th. President Bill Clinton, Massachusetts Senate Candidate Elizabeth Warren, and rising star in the Democratic Party Mayor Julian Castro are among the keynote speakers at this year’s convention.
I predict President Obama and his re-election team will use the month of August to continue raising doubts on Governor Romney who has switched his positions on everything from gun control, climate change, gay rights, and health care. Romney, as the CEO of Bain Capital, shut down businesses and laid off workers across the country all while exporting jobs to China and India, and his refusal to release his tax returns will allow the Democrats to stay on the attack.
Obama needs to pick-up his fundraising numbers, the GOP and their Super donors have been outraising him over the last two months and will begin an onslaught of negative advertisements from now until Election Day. The July unemployment numbers will also be big news in August. The president needs hiring to increase at a pace it was experiencing at the beginning of the year (225k), not the sluggish 1.55% growth we have been experiencing as of late. If the economy adds under 100k jobs the Republicans will hammer away, if it adds 125-150k jobs the attacks will come but can be neutralized, and over 150k is good enough for the President to take his case to the American people that now isn’t the time to change presidents.
Congress is unpopular and is easily one of the worst in history. More time was spent on arguing on issues such as abortion than jobs in the House of Representatives and the Republicans in the Senate filibustered nearly every bill the Democrats proposed. As of right now I predict that the Democrats will hold on to the Senate by a slim margin 51-49, and that the Republicans will lose House seats but not enough to lose the majority.
The “unknowns” will shape this race as much as anything. What will the next three job reports show, is there a domestic or international incident that is yet to occur, what will happen with the European economy, and what impact will the voter suppression efforts in states across the country have on turn-out. Couple those things with the Presidential and Vice Presidential Debates in October and you can see why there is so much to still be determined.
The 2012 Presidential Race is shaping up to look more like the 2004 Presidential Election than the 2008 Election. The country is evenly divided and turn-out in the Battle Ground States will make all the difference. So, remember to make sure you, your family, and friends are registered to vote. This election is a make or break election for the working class, and we can’t afford to return to the failed Republican policies of George Bush. Believe me when I say, Mitt Romney cannot win this election, but President Obama can lose it, and it is going to take all of our efforts to make sure that doesn’t happen.
Less than 100 Days To Go!!!!