# Obama Strategy for 2012

1. Jan 5, 2011

### WhoWee

White House press Secretary Robert Gibbs is stepping down.
http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2011/jan/5/obama-lose-spokesman-gibbs-steps-down/

Does this signal the start of campaign 2012? Gibbs has been with the President since 2004.

It sounds as though Gibbs will continue to assist the President.
http://www.nationalreview.com/corner/256399/obama-gibbs-retool-2012-robert-costa

As per the President:
"“For the last six years, Robert has been a close friend, one of my closest advisers and an effective advocate from the podium for what this administration has been doing to move America forward. I think it’s natural for him to want to step back, reflect and retool. That brings up some challenges and opportunities for the White House – but it doesn’t change the important role that Robert will continue to play on our team.”"

The press has speculated the location of the campaign headquarters will be Chicago.
http://www.nbcchicago.com/blogs/war...2012-Re-Election-HQ-to-Chicago-112450444.html

"The Tribune lists a number of factors in the likelihood of President Obama centering his headquarters in Chicago, including strategist David Axelrod's planned move back to the city, blunting the perceived anti-Washington climate around the country and staying strategically close to a number of battleground states.

"He will and must select Chicago," American University political scientist James Thurber told the newspaper. "He needs to project an anti-Washington image and keep the campaign staff far away from the echo chamber in D.C."

A skeletal staff may be in place by spring 2011 with a larger team added by the summer or fall, according to some Democrats who talked to the paper."

Apparently, it's difficult for the President to run as a Washington outsider - will this be believable?

2. Jan 5, 2011

I suspect his most successful strategy will be to quit before the Democratic party wastes $40 Million trying to re-elect a president with one of the lowest approval ratings in history. 3. Jan 5, 2011 ### WhoWee I like your attitude. However, I think the Dems need to chart a course for 2012, but more importantly look ahead to 2016. In the context of 2016, Biden is baggage (IMO) and Hillary (or Oprah based on popularity?) would be the logical VP choice. As for approval ratings, unless a very strong Republican candidate emerges, 12 months is plenty of time to rebuild popularity. 4. Jan 5, 2011 ### Hepth 5. Jan 5, 2011 ### russ_watters ### Staff: Mentor I don't see what one thing has to do with the other. The start of a new year (especially after a mid-term election) is a good time to make staff changes. And I think in particular, you shouldn't keep a spokesperson too long, lest people become too comfortable with them and forget that they are just the messenger. As for Obama's re-election strategy and prospects, a lot depends on what happens to the economy the next two years, of course. However... It is easy to say an incumbent can't run on "change", but Obama can simply say he's not finished yet. One of the big aces for Obama in 2008, though, was his lack of experience translated into lack of things to criticize him for in an era of anti-establishment thinking. So it was easy to make a campaign out of colorful but content-less speeches because they had no real-world application to criticize. Now he's had to turn those speeches into policy and as a result, there is a lot to analyze and criticize, with failures, broken promises, unpopular legislation and ridiculously bad predictions. A republican need-not disagree with the current state of 'Gitmo, for example, to still criticize him for saying he'd close it and castigate the voting public for believing him when he said he'd close it. Same goes for unemployment. So his re-election campaign will certainly be a lot more complicated than his election campaign was. Nevertheless, 'it's still just the economy, stupid'. With the most recognizable current issue being unemployment, if unemployment is still above 9% in 20 months, he won't have a prayer of being re-elected and if it is below 7%, no Republican will have a prayer of beating him. Between those, it'll be about who can work the issue better. 6. Jan 5, 2011 ### WhoWee He's going to work as a consultant, along with Axelrod. http://www.latimes.com/news/politics/la-pn-0105-gibbs-gone-20110106,0,7503226.story "As a private consultant, Gibbs will remain a top political adviser to Obama as the re-election campaign gears up. David Axelrod, a senior adviser and Jim Messina, a deputy chief of staff, are also leaving the White House to concentrate on the re-election campaign." 7. Jan 5, 2011 ### Vanadium 50 Staff Emeritus I'm not so sure that's completely true. I think at least 50% of the problem was not the economy per se, it was that the Obama administration's attitude was "we will work on that - right after we get our own agenda passed", or put a less-flattering way: "your problems are not as important as our desires". If the Obama administration is perceived as trying to help, they will be in better shape, even if unemployment is still high. As a historical example, in 1932, unemployment was 13%, and FDR won the election with 46 states and 57% of the popular vote. By 1936 it was up around 20%, and FDR won with 48 states and 60% of the popular vote. 8. Jan 5, 2011 ### WhoWee Didn't they tweak the way unemployment is calculated last week? Regardless, I think the Dem's believe they'll be able to champion another unemployment extension - beyond 99 weeks at the end of 2011. Also, let's not forget that the real unemployment number is higher - when you factor in people who are under-employed, those working multiple part time jobs, and the people who are working for cash. If the economy perks up, these will be first people in line to fill new positions. 9. Jan 5, 2011 ### WhoWee Actually, I think Reid and Obama will try to bargain away spending cuts based upon furthering their agenda. At this point, I'm not convinced they won't sacrifice parts of health care to push immigration, union expansion, environment, and social issues. They are motivated by ideology (IMO) and as the saying goes - "you can't be a little bit pregnant". Once a program starts, they know it's very difficult to completely remove. 10. Jan 6, 2011 ### Ygggdrasil Less than a month after being inaugurated in Feburary 2009, Obama signed the stimulus bill to help improve the economy and save jobs. In March, Geithner implemented programs to help buy depreciated real estate assets to try to improve the housing market. Furthermore, in March, the Obama administration intervened in the US auto industry to prevent the likely collapse of two of the three main auto manufacturers in the US. These are some of the many policies implemented by the Obama administration to spur job creation and boost the economy that occurred well before health care reform was brought up for debate in the summer of 2009 (which I assume is the agenda that you claim Obama was pushing ahead of job creation). Furthermore, right after passage of the obamacare bill, Obama introduced and passed a jobs bill to help provide additional stimulus to the economy. You can certainly argue that these have been the wrong measures to create jobs and that the Obama administration has been unsuccessful at creating jobs. But, given these facts, it is difficult to claim that the Obama administration put non-economic issues such as health care, DADT repeal, and environmental policy in front of job creation (in fact many have criticized his job creation policies such as the stimulus as having gone too far and being too big). 11. Jan 6, 2011 ### WhoWee Your defense of him is that (other than being a good salesman) he's incompetent as a leader? 12. Jan 6, 2011 ### Ygggdrasil I am refuting the claim that the Obama administration's attitude has been "we will work on job creation right after we get our own agenda passed" and "your problems are not as important as our desires." I am saying that one's opinion on Obama should be (obviously) based on whether one believes that his job creation policies were the correct policies to implement. (And for the record, I do not believe that he has been a good salesman). 13. Jan 6, 2011 ### WhoWee While selling the stimulus plan, he said that without it unemployment would exceed 8% - we're now hovering close to 10% - with over 8,000,000 people out of work and a$14,000,000,000,000 national debt. His response was to talk about jobs created or saved.

His supporters thought it was terrific.
http://www.npr.org/blogs/thetwo-way...-team-stimulus-saved-created-3-6-million-jobs

Then people began to question the results.
http://abcnews.go.com/Politics/jobs-saved-created-congressional-districts-exist/story?id=9097853

We haven't heard much about created or saved recently - have we?

14. Jan 6, 2011

### Staff: Mentor

We don't disagree, I just think that if unemployment ends up low enough, he'll be able to argue that he was responsible or conversely, people will care less that he didn't do more to help. He did, after all, get the stimulus passed immediately after taking office and he can argue that tackling the economy was an iterative process. Republicans will, of course, counter with the argument that the stimulus wasn't even well targeted at fixing the economy but rather at pushing pet projects and causes, but if unemployment has recovered enough, it might not have traction. If unemployment is down, people may just think "well, he could have gotten it down faster, but he eventually did get it down" and not have a strong enough negative opinion to vote against him. He's the incumbent, so being unimpressed with him isn't enough not to re-elect him - people have to dislike him [his policies/record].
That's interesting, I had no idea. Still, I'm not sure that unemployment was the most recognizable feature of the Great Depression, was it? Wasn't it the collapse of the financial industry that took people's life savings bigger?

15. Jan 6, 2011

### Staff: Mentor

Democrats used that argument during the Bush years, so it is ironic that the shoe is on the other foot now. The issues of underemployed, long term unemployment and left-the-workforce are real and are worse the higher unemployment is, but as I said during the Bush years, in order to compare stats, the stats have to be collected the same way. One can't compare our current 10% unemployment to the 10% unemployment of the 1970s unless they were measured the same way.

Anyway, it is my understanding that it wasn't the unemployment rate itself that was being changed, just that they were adding more data on long-term unemployment to the basket of stats collected.

16. Jan 6, 2011

### WhoWee

William Daley, Chief of Staff - a very good choice for the President.

Daley is experienced (working with Republicans too), he has business experience (a first for this Administration), he certainly understands politics, and he could be a potential running mate OR a candidate for 2016. My hat is off to the President.

17. Jan 6, 2011

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
Is there any logical connect at all between yggg's post and your characterization of it?

18. Jan 6, 2011

Staff Emeritus
I think those are both true statements, but that was not the point I was making. The point I was making is that the electorate doesn't think this was helpful. (Based on the July Rasmussen poll) And in an election, it's what the electorate thinks that matters.

Like I said, I don't think it was helpful at job creation. What are the big pieces of ARRA? An extension of unemployment benefits, a tax credit for low and moderate income family, and infrastructure funding that went to the states. The first two are unlikely to help job creation ("more food stamps! now we can hire a maid!") and it turns out that the last one was essentially a transfer of debt from the states to the federal government. That may be a good and necessary thing, but it's unlikely to make much of a dent in unemployment.

19. Jan 6, 2011

### WhoWee

How would you characterize this post? (my bold)

"Less than a month after being inaugurated in Feburary 2009, Obama signed the stimulus bill to help improve the economy and save jobs. In March, Geithner implemented programs to help buy depreciated real estate assets to try to improve the housing market. Furthermore, in March, the Obama administration intervened in the US auto industry to prevent the likely collapse of two of the three main auto manufacturers in the US. These are some of the many policies implemented by the Obama administration to spur job creation and boost the economy that occurred well before health care reform was brought up for debate in the summer of 2009 (which I assume is the agenda that you claim Obama was pushing ahead of job creation). Furthermore, right after passage of the obamacare bill, Obama introduced and passed a jobs bill to help provide additional stimulus to the economy.

You can certainly argue that these have been the wrong measures to create jobs and that the Obama administration has been unsuccessful at creating jobs. But, given these facts, it is difficult to claim that the Obama administration put non-economic issues such as health care, DADT repeal, and environmental policy in front of job creation (in fact many have criticized his job creation policies such as the stimulus as having gone too far and being too big). "

My logical conclusion was that Obama is a good salesman - he sold his programs and got them funded - but apparently he doesn't know what he's doing - as nothing worked in the context of job creation. Where is my logic faulty?

20. Jan 6, 2011

### Gokul43201

Staff Emeritus
It is faulty in that it has nothing to do with the argument that yggg was making.