One Year out from the 2012 Election.
A lot of things can happen in a year. The way news is produced, reported and distributed, we have now have a 24/7 news cycle. That means a year's worth of issues, analysis and discussion, some which is worthy of attention, some not.
Politics around the world now drives our issues as our economy is connected as the goods, services and trade of other nations causes ripples in our approach to our own country problems. Most businesses still work on the 5 day week model, but the way economies around the world are connected, news occurs overnight and affects the daily political & business discussion even while one 1/2 of the world sleeps or takes a weekend.
Greece fails to act on their financial issues, Europe reacts and that "wave" washes ashore here before people are out of their beds. The overseas markets rise or fall and Wall Street has to expect the market here to be on a up or down push before the traders are in place.
The President rightly faces an uphill fight as his handling of our economy has been patently poor. He spent the first two years focusing on his own narrow political wants & desires instead of putting the needs of the nation first. He went on a spending spree that benefited his political allies (unions, public employees and "green" businesses like Solyndra) which wound being sinkholes for the taxpayers money. The billions spent on TARP by his Czars and others did not yield jobs. It fattened up the coffers of his political pals but left the majority of citizens without any jobs.
A year is a long time in our country's election cycle. Those who looked strong 6 months ago when they announced their candidacy ( Perry, Bachmann, Huntsman, etc.) have not been able to create any real sustained drive. This left voters seeking someone who could have enough "buzz" to get them excited about supporting a candidate. In the end, we have seen all but Slick Mitt get some push but due to self inflicted errors, fall as quickly as they rose. Mitt has made some real stupid remarks too but he seems to have enough $$$ and support from the GOP party establishment that his blandness is given a pass.
So, where does that put the voter one year out? In a very untenable position. No real choice for voters between the President (who is a failure) and a GOP candidate (who will not be the best choice, but rather what we are offered.)
This week has seen Nancy Pelosi deluding herself about recapturing the House from the GOP. The GOP candidates make position statements but hardly anyone pays attention. The President denounces the GOP house for reaffirming the nation's motto of " In God we trust" which inflames those who see him as not in line with the majority of voters beliefs and moral values. The primary schedule was solidified and the NH voters will go first, as they should, on January 10th. Unemployment stays solid at 9% because companies refuse to hire more workers and are hording cash.
When you add up all the +'s and -'s in the mix, the President is heading for a historic arse-kicking. He keeps alienating the middle, the suburban voters that have swung the election for the last 40 years. The GOP will likely fall in behind Slick Mitt not based on his being the best candidate but because he is the blandest and least offensive of all the GOP contenders. If NJ Governor Chris Christie had jumped in, this would have been a vastly different political landscape.
The next 365 days will be a roller coaster of ups & downs for the country and the voters. The economy will likely stay pat and not provide the President with anything that will show his pitiful efforts can make a difference. The GOP will not want to give him any political victories in this next year. His continued whining about the " Jobs Bill" is not gaining traction as most see it for what it is - another chance for him to funnel millions to his union supporters and a 2nd stimulus bill. No one wants to allow him a 2nd spending spree when the first yielded no real change in unemployment. We can hardly afford this type of one-sided spending in our current fiscal status.
I don't see how any issue that is presented helps the present administration. They are truly an unlikable bunch - Biden sticking his foot in his mouth daily, Napolitano acting like people are guilty until proven innocent, Holder ignoring crimes when it is his political allies who have done something & acting counter to what you would expect from an attorney general, The Administration spokesman giving people the "stonewall" treatment when the press asks for answers.....it goes on & on.
Those who are aligned hard left or hard right will not change their votes. The MIDDLE is where the action will be and presently, the MIDDLE has been getting slammed for the past three years. This is not a recipe for victory for the DEMS as they have been in charge for the past three years.
Time will tell the tale but right now, it looks like we will have to choose between the President ( a known failure ) and a GOP candidate ( bland, blander & blandest of POLS). If the DEMS are dumped, they will not take the rejection of the voters as they should (a learning moment on what they need to do better next time) but will make sure that they obstruct anything new the GOP proposes. This is the main challenge the new President will face as he will be "on the clock" and watched very, very closely to make a difference in short order.
Either way, the country is in a tough place with a year to get off the "train to nowhere" we have been on since Obama got in....stand by for rough seas. Rougher than we have been on presently, which is making quite a statement.