Two weeks ago I wrote a column about President Obama creating separation between himself and Gov. Mitt Romney in the polls, especially in the key battleground states like Ohio, Florida and Virginia.
Two weeks ago Obama was ahead by a few percentage points in all these states. Today, he is trending behind Romney is almost all the swing states. What happened? Romney trounced Obama in the first of three presidential debates is what happened. Liberals were furious that he looked so unprepared, so lethargic and unengaged. One of my friends said midway through the evening it appeared Obama wanted to call it a day, go out back and have a cigarette.
My own take is somewhat different. I think the president had a bad night because he has fewers bullets in his gun than Barney Fife. He’s got nothing to offer.
His main problem is the fact that his economic plan just simply did not work. He had two full years of absolute control of both houses of congress by the Democrats, passing any and every law they wanted. They were kids in a candy store with no adults around. And for all that power – Obama has nothing to show for it except Obamacare. And as Romney pointed out during the debate, even that legislation was ramrodded through and remains unpopular with a majority of the American people.
The only two arguments Obama can try to sell are: 1) “Trust me, I know you can’t see it now, but we are getting this economy going again.” 2) “Romney will take us back to the same ideas that got us into this financial mess in the first place.”
Those two arguments work with about 40 percent of the public because they identify with the Democratic Party.
It was Obama himself who said when he was elected, if he could not get the economy turned around he would be a one-term president. He may turn out to be a prophet, although I would caution against making any plans for a Romney inauguration just yet. There are two debates and three weeks left in the campaign, and Obama is still not so far behind he could not catch up. But again, I don’t know what he can say, even in the remaining debates, which would score a lot of points.
He can champion homosexual marriage if he wants, but every time he does so he forces African-American pastors to look in the mirror and ask themselves if they can support a man who is promoting what God is clearly against. (And Obama is counting on almost 100 percent support from black voters.) Homosexual marriage has failed in 32 of 32 states when put before the voters, most recently in North Carolina, so it’s not that popular an idea with the general public anyway.
We shall see if Obama can get his groove back. But as of today, Sunday, October 14, it is Romney who seems hungrier, even more presidential, with each passing day.
Community columnist TIM WILDMON is a Lee County resident. He is president of the American Family Association, but the column represents his personal opinion unless otherwise ted. Contact him at email@example.com.