Monday, December 20, 2010

The President needs to watch his base

Well, it appears that the President's continuing efforts to please the Republicans might come back to bite him in the form of a primary challenge in 2012. The Kiplinger Letter last week reported about possible challengers to President Obama in 2012, among them Congressmen Dennis Kucinich of Ohio, Lynn Woolsey of California, Sheila Lee of Texas, Senator Russ Feingold, and fomer DNC Chair and Vermont Governor Howard Dean. Despite these rumors, White House senior advisor David Axelrod has assured the media that any primary challenges are out of the question. And Kiplinger reported that any challengers won't get very far. I find that last thought not very accurate. Decision 2010 was full of challenges to the incumbants on both sides, with many falling to opponents, like Arlen Spector in Pennsylvania, Lisa Murkowski in Alaska (despite making history and staging a stunning write-in victory in the general election), and four others in the House of Representatives. So what would prevent that from happening to President Obama? It could happen.
The way I see it, Howard Dean is the best choice of possible challengers. First off, Dean has the name recognition. He ran in 2004, infamously known for the Dean Scream, and didn't hold much ground after that. He has executive experience, being the former Governor of Vermont and the Chairman of the Democratic National Committee. Speaking of the DNC, Dean worked hard during 2008 to get President Obama elected, employing his genius 50 State strategy, placing focus on all fifty states, not just the surefire wins. This helped swing some states that were always red to blue and claim most if not all the swing states. And as the icing on the cake, Howard Dean has been true to the progressive base, helping with Progressive Democrats of America, pushing for health care reform including a public option and wanting what is best for middle class, not the elites. The other possible challengers are also strong candidates, like Kucinich and Feingold. Both would be worthy running mates to Howard Dean, Feingold being the better choice because of he is from California and would help carry the West Coast.
Time will only tell what happens, there is still a year left until the 2012 elections begin and the President might return to his base that got him elected. But then again, he might move further away from his base in order to appease the Republicans.

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