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Posted at 10:30 AM ET, 11/ 5/2008

Obama's Long, Stormy Journey

By Steve Tracton

Riding the winds of change to victory

Emerging from the political storm of the campaign. Background photo by Kevin Ambrose (CWG). Obama photo by Paul Beaty (AP)

The "stressathon'' (as dubbed by Andrew Freedman to describe the nearly two years of 2008 presidential electioneering) has finally ended. Whew! Even for a political junkie like myself it's time for a breather, at least until the next presidential marathon begins by the end of 2010.

Now what?? Ann Posegate's post on election and weather analogies got me thinking about how weather analogies, as well as meteorological terms and metaphors, could be tied together to describe the election results and the issues, problems, etc. that face President Elect Obama. So, needing some outlet to relieve lingering symptoms of stressathonitis, I took a crack at it. Wisely or not, I now share it with you.

Keep reading for a documentary of Obama's journey using weather analogies. For the weather outlook through the weekend, see our full forecast.

A perfect storm of issues converged to favor Obama in the 2008 presidential race. These ranged from the dust storm-shrouded war in Iraq and snow-masked war in Afghanistan to the failures in navigating Hurricane Katrina's aftermath and ultimately to the financial whirlwind surrounding the bone chilling collapse of Wall Street.

The computer models assimilating polling data generally agreed on an Obama victory, but some outliers gave some credence to the possibility of a McCain win. Suffice to say, these did not verify.

In the wake of this election cyclone, there is little doubt that Obama will be forced to confront the extreme turbulence associated with intense squalls of bad news raining down like cats and dogs. Not to mention the thunder of criticism for acting at less than lightning speed in solving the wide array of sticky problems.

Little, if any, clearing is expected with dark clouds already on the horizon. The relentless blizzard of advice in this political climate may leave Obama misty-eyed and longing for his life before the buffeting gusts of the stress and strain of the campaign.

Lest it rain on Obama's Inaugural parade, a flurry of activity is predicted to intensify into a chaotic whirlpool of alternate plans and flood of bickering exchanges.

His family has weathered the storm so far but is often left with a foggy notion that things are getting out of control.

Regardless, I hope everyone longs for the next four years to begin as fresh as the morning dew and continue into the future as bright as a marvelous rainbow amidst a sky of wispy white clouds glistening with ice crystals.

Do you have weather analogies/metaphors to describe either campaign? Fire away in the comment area...

By Steve Tracton  | November 5, 2008; 10:30 AM ET
Categories:  Government, Tracton  
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Nice rainbow, but the picture of President Elect Obama isn't quite right. Couldn't you find a picture of him with a halo?

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr_Q | November 5, 2008 12:18 PM | Report abuse

Maybe I'm missing something. Apart from the play on words, what does this have to do with weather? The Post does some great political reporting, but this is not it. Nor is it good weather reporting. So why bother?

Posted by: RMVA | November 5, 2008 6:12 PM | Report abuse

The second paragraph clearly explains the rationale for this piece.

As for me I, I can recall a botched forecast from about a month ago:

For everyone who thinks the Huffington Post piece is humorous, you should read this, and then practice saying President McCain.

Mr. Q.

Posted by: Mr. Q. | October 9, 2008 12:19 AM

Posted by: John-Burke | November 5, 2008 8:59 PM | Report abuse

RM, why so serious?? Not everything has to be on the level of a discussion (debate) on dangerous human caused global warming.

Loosen up a bit and enjoy what at least was an attempt at some humor.

And, please don't take these comments too seriously

Posted by: SteveT-CapitalWeatherGang | November 6, 2008 10:54 AM | Report abuse

RMVA and Mr. Q both make excellent points, Steve -- leave the Obama Worship and commentary to literally every other corner of the WaPo's "in the tank" print and electronic media. Most folks come to CWG for the weather forecast and weather analyses, period. I can't help but wonder if, had Mr. McCain pulled a victory out of his hat, you would've been as "liberal" in your use of adjectives (fresh! bright! marvelous! glistening!) in describing the future. Gimme a break...

Posted by: VAStateOfMind | November 6, 2008 12:31 PM | Report abuse


I would have run identically the same piece had McCain won. Please don't be so presumptuous as to assume my political leanings.

The point is that even McCain, his official spokespersons and, I suspect, most of his supporters view the election of a new president as an opportunity to "reset"
(McCain's word) the direction of the country.

I believe that a vast majority of U.S.citizens, regardless of political persuasion, hope for a brighter future with the beginning of a new administration - whoever won the election. The dawning of a new dawn, etc was an obvious eaggeration for effect. I did leave out the halo, which I suspect some would have expected over McCain's head had he be on the stage

So for now, let's try to lighten up a bit

Posted by: SteveT-CapitalWeatherGang | November 6, 2008 5:07 PM | Report abuse

Oh, how I *PINE* for the days when Capital Weather Gang was an independently-run weather blog and not beholden to (and swallowed up by) an in-the-tank, multimedia conglomerate parent...

Posted by: VAStateOfMind | November 7, 2008 2:01 PM | Report abuse

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