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Dems rip Mitch McConnell's "one term" remark, but will voters care?

The other day, Mitch McConnell rather candidly acknowledged that his single most important goal is to guarantee a one-term Obama presidency, and Dems will continue to pound McConnell with this interesting new Web ad set for release today:

At bottom, the controversy over this McConnell statement speaks volumes about the difference in the ways Dems and Republicans play the politics game. Many liberals and Democrats have expressed outrage about McConnell's remarks. Yet there's nothing remotely surprising about them: Republicans have repeatedly said similar things in the past, and some (see DeMint, Jim) have openly acted as if guaranteeing a one-term Obama presidency is their number-one animating goal for two years now.

Dems have been hammering away at this sort of thing for months and months to argue that Republicans are partisan, obstructionist, and uninterested in pursuing bipartisan compromise in good faith. But the GOP leadership has simply never cared about this Dem line of attack, calculating -- perhaps correctly -- that voters are only interested accomplishments and are inclined to tune out this kind of thing as so much Beltway white noise.

Dems are right to keep up this line of criticism, if only to galvanize the base and to keep GOP negatives high. But it's unclear whether it has shifted the underlying political dynamic in any significant way.

Indeed, if anything, what's really interesting here is that McConnell sees no need whatsoever to even disguise his real aims, and never really has.

By Greg Sargent  | October 27, 2010; 10:45 AM ET
Categories:  2010 elections, Senate Republicans  
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Next: The voter fraud racket is back!

Comments

"But the GOP leadership has simply never cared about this Dem line of attack, calculating -- perhaps correctly -- that voters are only interested accomplishments."

Well, maybe. Or perhaps the public witnessed what the Dems did to Bush II for 6 years...

BTW, Greg - I haven't actually ever seen the full context for McConnell's remarks - is it possible for you to paste a larger snip?

Posted by: sbj3 | October 27, 2010 10:56 AM | Report abuse

He said that to acknowledge the Republican takeover the majority in the House next week will only be a symbolic victory. In this age of the Imperial Presidency, the White House is the seat of government - especially with the SCOTUS majority up for grabs in the near term.

Posted by: shrink2 | October 27, 2010 11:00 AM | Report abuse

Dems are right to keep up this line of criticism, if only to galvanize the base and to keep GOP negatives high. But it's unclear whether it has shifted the underlying political dynamic in any significant way.

*****

How could it? What is the approval rating of Republicans in Congress? Somewhere between 20 and 30 percent?

Posted by: nisleib | October 27, 2010 11:02 AM | Report abuse

How is McConnell's comment any different than the numerous pleas Obama has made to keep the GOP in the minority? McConnell wants to reclaim the White House, Obama wants to maintain Congressional majorities. These political goals are identical and both openly displayed.

Both sides engage in this sort of naked shows of ambition - the difference is that Democrats demagogue it when Republicans do it and Republicans accept it as part of politics (as you point out) when Democrats do it.

Posted by: joeb31 | October 27, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Doesn't EVERY right-thinking Republican want to limit Obama to one-term?!

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 11:04 AM | Report abuse

Ace of Spades responds to this very post:

http://ace.mu.nu/archives/307427.php

The morons over at Ace must love themselves some Greg Sargent.

"Furthermore, given that Obama's 'deserves reection' number is around 38%, I think it's fair to say that most Americans are supportive to some degree of the idea that Obama should be a one-term experiment."

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 27, 2010 11:13 AM | Report abuse

Were the words "but will voters care" just added to the headline?

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 11:18 AM | Report abuse

"Doesn't EVERY right-thinking Republican want to limit Obama to one-term?!"

Fortunately, there aren't enough of you to deny him a second term. Nationally, the GOP is a minority party that is becoming smaller and more regional.The sooner you accept that, the sooner the acid will stop eating your stomach lining.

Posted by: filmnoia | October 27, 2010 11:24 AM | Report abuse

There's no acid eating MY stomach lining; I sleep soundly at night too (if there aren't enough GOP out here, then we couldn't take the Congress next week either ; )

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 11:28 AM | Report abuse

Filmnoia, it's the Independents who will make the ultimate decision and right now they don't care much for Obama.

Something from the foreign press:

http://blogs.telegraph.co.uk/news/tobyharnden/100060568/barack-obama-sounds-like-a-snooty-anti-american-eurocrat-when-he-calls-us-voters-stupid/

Posted by: actuator | October 27, 2010 11:29 AM | Report abuse

@Kevin...

Does the Ace of Spades provide a link for their 38% number? Or are they like Q.Beck who simply states his opinion as fact and sticks to it no matter how many links prove him wrong.

I ask because...

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Election-2010/2010/1026/Should-Obama-run-again-More-voter-enthusiasm-than-for-Reagan-in-82

"Should Obama run again? More voter enthusiasm than for Reagan in '82.
In '82, 36% polled wanted Reagan to run again. In '94, 44% wanted Clinton to run again. Presently, 47% polled wish Obama to run again."

Perhaps you can dismiss the Christian Science Monitor as a left wing rag. Maybe 47% doesn't seem higher than 38%. Perhaps there is no perspective needed here as in Obama scores 11% points higher than Reagan at a similar time in his presidency.

Perhaps the latest Newsweek poll revealing the surge in Obama's popularity is also irrelevant at the Ace of Spades or could it be Kevin you're hanging around a right wing propaganda blog to offset the poisoning of your mind by this commie/pinko/tree hugging/welfare sucking/deadbeat progressive blog? :-)

http://www.newsweek.com/2010/10/22/poll-obama-approval-jumps-dems-more-fired-up.html

"President Obama’s approval ratings have jumped substantially, crossing the magic halfway threshold to 54 percent, up from 48 percent in late September, while the portion of respondents who disapprove of the president dropped to 40 percent, the lowest disapproval rating in a NEWSWEEK Poll since February 2010."

Then again Kevin I confess I suspect Newsweek must have missed STRF/Battleground/Clawrence/Joke and the rest of our posters who suffer from "Obama derangement syndrome" lol

Posted by: rukidding7 | October 27, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

The reason why we are having such problems in the House is because of the limitless terms. If a President should be held to held to two terms why should some of these brainless twits serve 40-50 years in a position they once deserved but no longer? Two terms max for all elected positions... Period, Period.

Posted by: jakesfriend1 | October 27, 2010 11:31 AM | Report abuse

actuator:

I had been registered INDEPENDENT since 1968, but switched to Republican this year simply because Obama is worse than ANY President in my lifetime!

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 11:32 AM | Report abuse

More:

http://gkupsidedown.blogspot.com/2010/10/daily-telegraph-on-bibles-and-guns.html

Posted by: actuator | October 27, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Hello? GOP--and a majority of people in the US--want Obama to be a one term president because they think his POLICIES are destroying the country/economy. The entire POINT of the election next week is to send the MESSAGE that he/Dems must STOP and change course or the US is doomed.

It remains to be seen what Obama will do when he has a GOP dominated House/Senate??? If he moves toward the center like Clinton, it might save the country (and his Presidency). But he's sending mad signals that he will NOT do this--see also the racist blabbering about "enemies" and how the GOP will have to work with *him*.

Obama is all about IDEOLOGY. I have my doubts he even WANTS to be reelected. The job is too much work for his taste, he isn't adored as he's come to expect from his academic/political experience. This isn't a man who enjoys being questioned/challenged. He's rich now, he'll go home and keep pontificating from on high like he's doing from the WH.

THE WAVE--bring it!!

Posted by: caligulous | October 27, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

Headline: Dems bring warm fuzzies to gang shootout with repubs..

Since this has been true since before Obama took office, why should now be any different.

This is why the strategy of proposing reasonable compromises in hopes of getting 1 or 2 republicans to vote for it in debates about banking, healthcare, or energy reform is just moving the political playing field farther to the right.

Instead of staking out the moral high ground as well as favoring policies that actually have the heft to accomplish what they set out to, Obama decided to try to reason with the 3 year old child that the republican party is now. He should have sent the republican toddlers into time out while the adults tried to solve the nation's problems. Instead he gave their cynical, obstructionist, and completely unworkable and counterproductive stances a modicum of credibility by engaging them and not just pointing out that republicans are throwing a 3 year old tantrum mindlessly opposing every domestic policy initiative put forward in the last two years.

HCR is of course the prime example. repubs viciously attacked the mandate, despite the fact that this was the republican alternative to hillarycare. This was the position staked out by Dole, baker, and daschle in their clearly Maoist, Stalinist, proposal for health care reform. When repubs repudiate positions (individual mandate) that they pushed and supported just a few years earlier, its clear that they have no interest in governing, just opposing anything that Obama or Dems propose and keeping their fatcat oligarch friends rolling in M.I.C, big pharma, C.O.C, etc. happy.

It is 3 year old behavior to take credit for projects that were funded by legislation that they demagogued and virulently opposed when it was being debated. Repubs don't even have the honesty to admit that the funding came from something they voted against. It would be honest to say., "I opposed the larger bill that this funding came from because too much of it was wasted, but this project, funded by stimulus dollars, has brought these jobs to my district/state." Has a single repub said this?

Crickets....

Posted by: srw3 | October 27, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

jakesfriend1:

I can understand term limits against the single executive, but I cannot support term limits against Congressman (and hopefully LOTS of women) elected this year. Nice try though ; )

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 11:35 AM | Report abuse

@actuator "right now they don't care much for Obama."

Care to explain how the two most recent polls posted above and done in OUR country back up your claim?

Posted by: rukidding7 | October 27, 2010 11:36 AM | Report abuse

mcconnell said was his actions have proved for 2 years. He does not care how badly he hurts America, he does not care how many people he harms, how many kids go to bed hungry, how many kids can't go to college, how many families are torn apart, just so long as he can hurt Our President in the process of inflicting all that harm on millions of people. And republicons cheer. Even as they are raked over the coals and bent over the sofa.

Posted by: John1263 | October 27, 2010 11:42 AM | Report abuse

caligulous:

Did you see his arrogant comment about the incoming GOP "gotta sit in back"? Earlier in his remarks, as usual, he blamed the Republicans for the current economy. He also made reference to taking the middle class on his proverbial bus ride. So the GOP have to sit in the back of the bus now, huh? Sounds exactly like what filmnoia is saying above.

Do you feel this remark by Obama is indicative of how he has treated Republicans for TWO YEARS now? Do you feel he views Republicans the same way the blacks were treated back before the Civil Rights Movement? Do you think that Dinesh D'Souza was on to something about Obama being anti-colonial?

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 11:43 AM | Report abuse

All, new Adam Serwer post on the "voter fraud" malarky:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/10/the_voter_fraud_racket_returns.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | October 27, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

actuator You can post all the Rupert Murdoch propaganda you wish. That's why nobody take you seriously. You probably get your U.S. News from Faux as well..we distort you decide.

We get it actuator..you are simply another of Murdoch's brainwashed sheeple...doesn't really make a difference whether you link to Fox News or one of Murdoch's many international properties...they have ZERO credibility among HONEST journalists.

I on the other hand gave you TWO different INDEPENDENT sources...but I guess you think the Christian Science Monitor is a far left as Murdoch's holdings are to the right.

Posted by: rukidding7 | October 27, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

"Filmnoia, it's the Independents who will make the ultimate decision and right now they don't care much for Obama."

But wait until they see the alternative.
Other than fatally flawed Plastic Man Mitt who contorts himself into different positions to suit the occasion, the rest of the GOP potential candidate list are political mutations, far outside the mainstream.
The last poll done shows Obama at a favorability rating of 54%, higher than the sainted Reagan at this time in his first term. If the GOP takes back the House, it will be because the DINOs will lose in many of the swing districts. Those running as part of the "Democratic Wing of the Democratic Party" will come through it just fine.

Posted by: filmnoia | October 27, 2010 11:45 AM | Report abuse

@jd2: but I cannot support term limits against Congressman (and hopefully LOTS of women)

(probably) the first thing that JD and I agree on...

Posted by: srw3 | October 27, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

I would say that, barring a bad candidate, Obama would probably lose his re-election right now. Things have never been this toxic for a President 2 years into his first term. Even Carter was in better shape in 1978.

Posted by: TheLastBrainLeft | October 27, 2010 11:46 AM | Report abuse

@ruk: Regarding bashing Ace.

The number comes form a POLITICO / George Washington University Battleground Poll. It was all right there in the link.

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0910/42737.html

"Only 38 percent of respondents said Obama deserves to be reelected, even though a majority of voters hold a favorable view of him on a personal level. Forty-four percent said they will vote to oust him, and 13 percent said they will consider voting for someone else."

Read more: http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0910/42737.html#ixzz13ZgFPmeQ

Posted by: sbj3 | October 27, 2010 11:47 AM | Report abuse

@SBJ Thanks for the links since I do not read Ace....Forgive me though as a former journalist if I trust the Christian Science Monitor and Newsweek more than I trust Politico. In fairness to Politico their poll is now over a month old while the Newsweek poll is less than a week old and Newsweek also had much lower numbers in September.

I'm too lazy to do all the research for the links but I have seen numerous stories pointing out that Obama's favor-ability ratings are ahead of Reagan's at the same point in the Reagan Administration.

But I certainly will stipulate that polls are a volatile thing. Facts however are not quite as subjective.

There were more "private sector" jobs created in the first ten months of this year than the ENTIRE 8 years of the Bush Administration!

http://newsjunkiepost.com/2010/10/08/its-official-more-private-sector-jobs-created-in-2010-than-during-entire-bush-years/

Almost half of the stimulus was the largest middle class tax cut in our history. Other parts of the stimulus went to the states who used it to keep from laying of any more of their employees..teachers, cops, firemen than orginally anticipated as well as balance their budgets.

EVENTUALLY these FACTS will win out. You know that old bromide about fooling some of the people some of the time...yadda yadda...right now Fox is fooling all of their viewers all of the time but their day will come as well...:-)

Then again maybe not...we do have Joke and Clawrence who must be adamantly against "middle class' tax cuts as well as being against creation of private sector jobs.
How dare that Obama create more private sector jobs this year than the Bush Administration did their ENTIRE 8 YEARS!

Posted by: rukidding7 | October 27, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

The correct time for the Democrats to complain was when DeMint declared that he wanted to make Health Care Reform Obama's Waterloo! They should have bounced on it last year, and they should have mentioned it every time a Republican raised objections ... just to emphasize that the Republicans' interest was to obstruct, not to find a solution.

Posted by: AMviennaVA | October 27, 2010 12:02 PM | Report abuse

RUK, A little old but it is now probably worse.

http://themoderatevoice.com/45061/cnn-poll-majority-of-independent-voters-disapprove-of-obama/

Posted by: actuator | October 27, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

@AMviennaVA

"The correct time for the Democrats to complain was when DeMint declared that he wanted to make Health Care Reform Obama's Waterloo!"

AMEN!!! They should have had their PACs up with non stop ads showing that infamous comment and run with it as hard as if it was a campaign for reelection! Two birds with one stone...influence the HCR debate as well as point out Tea Party fave Demented as nothing more than a partisan political hack

Posted by: rukidding7 | October 27, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

@kw and TLBL: 38% approval means that people to some degree agree with of the idea that Obama should be a one-term experiment.


@tlbl: I would say that, barring a bad candidate, Obama would probably lose his re-election right now. Things have never been this toxic for a President 2 years into his first term. Even Carter was in better shape in 1978.

Clearly you need to learn about the intertubes and the ability to actually verify what you say to be true...

Reagan in 1982 had about the same approval ratings. (<40%).

Truman had approval in the mid 30's after 2 years (slightly different because he became president due to the death of FDR.

Now here is the good part. The intertubes allow you to add a "link" where people can check out your sources...My source for this:

http://online.wsj.com/public/resources/documents/info-presapp0605-31.html

Also KW, when you put Obama up against any of the current repub hopefuls, he cleans their clock. Elections are choices between 2 or more candidates. The repubs have no candidate that beats Obama head to head right now...That could change but right now, it is false or at least radically premature to say that a majority want Obama to be a 1 term president. Lots of candidates are in the running for office with under 50% approval and some will win...(see reid, harry), not because they are popular, but because the alternative is far worse. Reid may well lose, but he will get far more than 33% of the vote, which is where his approval is about now...Isn't amazing what a truly whacked out candidate can do to ones political fortunes. Of course, the repubs have no one to blame but themselves for nominating candidates like Angle, ODonnell, Paul, and Miller. The truly sad thing for our country is that some of these unqualified, genuinely nutty, and downright bizarre candidates may win...It just shows that civics education (and general critical thinking) is at an all time low in the US.

Posted by: srw3 | October 27, 2010 12:07 PM | Report abuse

"How dare that Obama create more private sector jobs this year than the Bush Administration did their ENTIRE 8 YEARS!"

Good point. I'll give the Bush Admin. credit in one area, and that is that they were much better than the Obama crowd in marketing. Their tax cut was sent to people in one lump sum, whereas the Obama tax refunds have shown up in an increase here and there in people's pay checks, where people don't notice it as much.

Posted by: filmnoia | October 27, 2010 12:11 PM | Report abuse

I don't think Obama is in as much trouble as the blogosphere indicates. Most of the bloggers are angry Republicans it seems to me, which does not represent our greater society. The rationale and coherent among us are smart and secure enough not to engage in this stuff.

Okay, I say give the keys to the Republicans and the Pledge to America and let's see what happens in Congress. Anything to put an end to all the socialism and liberal elitist whining and crowing over a Democratic president. My prediction is that the conservatives will get in the car and head straight to the Wall Street, Exxon and Big Pharma drive-through window asking for more campaign money while doing nothing about the economy in favor of middle class individuals. Unfortunately, this is what both parties do. Other than wild campaign accusations and stone throwing for prime time tv the 2 parties are essentially identical. They both spend, spend, spend to bring home the pork.

Posted by: citizen4truth1 | October 27, 2010 12:17 PM | Report abuse

@actuator...No VERY old! But at least I respect you've shifted to CNN an organization with credibility...unlike ANY of Murdoch's propaganda machines.

Nobody is going to argue that ANY president who was handed the WORST economic mess is going to be popular in his first two years.
The economic mess handed off by the Bush team was HISTORIC in size and scope.

This is basically the same problem Reagan had succeeding Carter...although on a much, much SMALLER scale. Still a recession hurt Reagan's numbers even more than Obama's numbers. People on BOTH sides of the aisle thought he was a dead man walking at the two year mark of his Administration. How did that work out?

Posted by: rukidding7 | October 27, 2010 12:18 PM | Report abuse

@filmnoia "the Obama tax refunds have shown up in an increase here and there in people's pay checks, where people don't notice it as much."

Exactly. My office manager is married to a former minister and they watch Fox exclusively. During the election they went hook line and sinker for Obama will raise your taxes. When the stimulus tax cuts came through I took the pay stub out to my office manager and showed her the 3% extra on her paycheck that week and explained where it came from and that it would continue and that our company couldn't afford the 5-6% raise required to give her the same after tax raise.

The light has gone on for her and she now completely understands the debate over the Bush tax cuts...expiring or getting extended and for whom. I've even pointed out that even those earning more than $250,000 would STILL get a tax cut even if the Dems let the cuts for the top 2% expire...it would only be on their income over $250,000 where they would see an increase but like everyone else they'd still get a break on that first 250 along with the middle class. She looks at Fox a lot differently now.

Posted by: rukidding7 | October 27, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

@ruk: "Does the Ace of Spades provide a link for their 38% number? Or are they like Q.Beck who simply states his opinion as fact and sticks to it no matter how many links prove him wrong."

This was the link they provided on the 38% number:

http://www.politico.com/news/stories/0910/42737.html

And I'm not a big fan of Beck, but I'm never going to forget listening to him circa 2006 telling me there was a big economic crisis coming. Not sure if he used the words "housing bubble" but he certainly alluded to it. I realize a stopped clock is right twice a day, but he was right then when most everybody else was wrong.

I thought his predictions of imminent economic doom were nuts. At the time.

Still, with the chalk boards and the conspiracies . . . ah, well.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 27, 2010 12:26 PM | Report abuse

RUK, what has made it worse is that it took Obama more than a year to figure out that the private sector, esp small business drives wealth production. His initial cozying up to big business, big finance and big unions seemed to reflect his big ego. His focus on health care instead of the economy was incredible. Now that the federal budget cost for HCR is turning out to be as much as 5 times what the CBO reported and health insurance rates are going way up there are going to be more voters who realize the president's focus was in the wrong place and we're all going to be paying for it.

Posted by: actuator | October 27, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

@swr3: "Also KW, when you put Obama up against any of the current repub hopefuls, he cleans their clock. Elections are choices between 2 or more candidates. The repubs have no candidate that beats Obama head to head right now...That could change but right now, it is false or at least radically premature to say that a majority want Obama to be a 1 term president."

Indeed. That's just one number and I have said (here and elsewhere) that I think Obama wins in 2012. Just ask any of my fellow conservatives who disagree with me. ;)

Unless he faces a primary challenger. Then I think it's likely he loses.

Posted by: Kevin_Willis | October 27, 2010 12:30 PM | Report abuse

obama gets a second term.

Posted by: donaldtucker | October 27, 2010 12:50 PM | Report abuse

I'm waiting for any Republican to convince me that multiple-chinned, multi-millionaire Mitch McConnell and his fellows in the GOP crowd represent America's future.

Posted by: jimsteinberg1 | October 27, 2010 12:57 PM | Report abuse

@LastBrainLeft:

"I would say that, barring a bad candidate, Obama would probably lose his re-election right now. Things have never been this toxic for a President 2 years into his first term. Even Carter was in better shape in 1978."

Your assessment is off-base. Obama's numbers actually are, according to several assessments by various polling organizations, on par or better than numbers observed for Clinton and Reagan at similar points in their presidencies. Of course, both of them easily won reelection.

In fact, Pew has recently found that 47% of voters would like to see Obama run for reelection. Compare that to the 36% who felt the same way about Reagan at a similar point in his presidency.

As much as people want to try to write off Obama and try to compare him to Carter (a comparison handily dismissed as nonsensical by most historians, by the way), Obama is not Carter. For one, at this point, Obama's accomplishments soundly eclipse Carter's, and according to historians, even the right's beloved Reagan's accomplishments. (Obama's already being put in the LBJ & FDR class for accomplishments.)

[Here's a link to a CSM article on the Pew poll: http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Election-2010/2010/1026/Should-Obama-run-again-More-voter-enthusiasm-than-for-Reagan-in-82]

Posted by: associate20 | October 27, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

My compliments to all the posters on this article. Rarely I have seen differences discussed so intelligently, rationally, and civilly. Wish I could see more of this type of dialog.

Posted by: warren5 | October 27, 2010 1:20 PM | Report abuse

jimsteinberg1:

Did you even know that John Kerry (D-MA) and Herb Kohl (D-WI) are the two RICHEST Senators ($750 million and $243 million respectively)? At least in terms of the FUTURE Americans actually born, rather than aborted, McConnell and his fellows in the GOP crowd get my vote ; )

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 1:21 PM | Report abuse

The key to what McConnell said is that it pretty much affirms what the Republicans have been doing all along - Trying to make the Obama adminstration fail at any cost. The sad part about this is that many voters do not realize that this obstructionism hurts the public too. It has wasted time, money and lives of many citizens.

Posted by: bestowens | October 27, 2010 1:26 PM | Report abuse

"Dems are right to keep up this line of criticism, if only to galvanize the base and to keep GOP negatives high. But it's unclear whether it has shifted the underlying political dynamic in any significant way."

I think the criticism also has another (perhaps unintended, perhaps not) benefit for Democrats. If Republicans do succeed in taking the House (an outcome that's not guaranteed), it will allow Dems to pivot easily, and strongly, against Republican obstruction with somewhat of an "I told you so" message.

Right now, it seems that voters may be dismissing the Dem highlighting of Republican obstruction and radicalization as mere election-year "politicking." But, because the electorate has been (excessively) primed with the obstructionism/radicalization message, any move by Republicans that reinforces either or both of those primes will likely have severe political consequences for Republicans.

In other words, it appears that (thanks to the economy and voter amnesia and/or apathy) the public may be willing to give the Republicans the benefit of the doubt, but (thanks to Democrats) only with a very short leash. If Republicans "misbehave," the public will quickly, and perhaps, severely, yank their leash, and boot them right back out in 2012.

People aren't talking too much about the political pickle that Republicans will need to get themselves out of, but it's likely to become the most intriguing aspect of any Republican gains, whether or not Republicans take the House. That conundrum will be the decision Republicans will have to make between cooperation, which their base wants to have none of, but independents do, and obstruction/gridlock, which their base would love, but would be the fastest way to scare off independents. The latter choice would also reinforce the Democratic messages that are being put forth now, and likely lead to the aforementioned leash yanking and 2012 boot.

Posted by: associate20 | October 27, 2010 1:41 PM | Report abuse

bestowens:

Not "any" cost (for instance, I don't want Obama assassinated ; )

associate20:

What if the Republican Congress "pivots" and actually proceeds forward doing the job Americans sent them to do? It will then be up to Obama to obstruct them or not. I think that that's about the best way for Obama to be limited to one-term (again, I do not want him martyred).

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 1:47 PM | Report abuse

GOP poster, nisleib, said:

"There's no acid eating MY stomach lining; I sleep soundly at night too . . ."

Medical note: That's a defining characteristic of sociopaths as well.

Posted by: silverfish1 | October 27, 2010 1:49 PM | Report abuse

@Greg

This is really easy, and it's a little surprising you don't get it.

It's true that the most voters don't care about what McConnell said, though some "moderates" will. However, the whole point is to get the MEDIA to start realizing that the GOP isn't a serious party anymore, in hopes that they stop giving Republicans a constant and consistant edge on the national scale.

But the mistake Dems make is that the media will never, NEVER, drop their bias towards Republicans as long as it's all run by giant corporations. There's too much money to be made from outside GOP groups and tax loopholes the GOP loves to pass.

Posted by: TheBBQChickenMadness | October 27, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

Whether you are a righty or a lefty I have a question for you.
What would be the deficiant if the Iraq and the Afgan war monies were included in the budget during the Bush term. I don't hear anyone talking about that issue.
As for McConnell's comment..I will say what everyone seems to think but are afraid of saying it...I believe is has do with race more than policies and of course you can add BIG business money.

Posted by: jhawkerfan | October 27, 2010 2:47 PM | Report abuse

@JakeD2:

That's an aspect of the conundrum: Republicans will have to figure out what job, exactly, they think Americans want them to do*.

Yes, polls show that Americans believe that "spending should be cut." But, the devil lies in the details. Americans also tend to actually oppose cuts in benefits and services. (As a nation, we're a bit bipolar about spending and cuts.)

Yes, some polls show that Americans oppose bills that have passed Congress. But, those polls (often the very same ones that show opposition to the overarching bill) tend to find broad support for the provisions contained in those bills.

Yes, there are polls that show that Americans like a divided government. But, people oppose, dare I say abhor, governmental gridlock, and are likely to harshly penalize any governmental inaction, particularly in this economy. Additionally, the onus for cooperation will fall primarily to Republicans, not the President, if polling is correct. Most Americans believe Republicans haven't made a good-faith effort to work with the President. (As mentioned in my previous post, Democrats have laid the groundwork for furthering that point with the American public, if Republicans continue obstruction.)

The bottom line is that it would be very easy for the Republicans to go awry if they're overzealous and interpret a regained majority (should that happen) in the House as a "mandate" for Republican policies, which are quite nebulous at this point. (According to top Republicans, that ambiguity is deliberate.)

For one, midterm electorates aren't equivalent to 4-year electorates. It would be a mistake for Republicans to assume that 35-40% (which is typical turnout for a midterm election) speaks for the nation (which typically reaches about 60% turnout for presidential elections).

For two, midterm electorates aren't equivalent to 4-year electorates. (Yes, I meant to type that twice.) Too-conservative decisions will have to answer to a 2012 electorate that is much less conservative and more Democratic than the one typically seen in midterm elections.

[Hint: Republicans seem to be getting rewarded for not being the party in power in tough economic times, even though they deserve a disproportionate amount of blame for the current status of the economy & deficit. Thus, it would be a mistake for them to read a "mandate" from a vote of Democratic disaffection; it's not the same as a vote of Republican policy endorsement, particularly since those policies are ill-defined at this stage.]

Posted by: associate20 | October 27, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

OOPS: I misspelled "deficit"

Posted by: jhawkerfan | October 27, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

So a Republican wants Obama to be a one-term president and this somehow cites outrage on behalf of the White House and Democrats?

That cracks me up.

Posted by: aemr65 | October 27, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Interesting... Bush is blamed for the "historic economic mess" even though Dems were in control of Congress the last two years of his presidency. And they have had 2 more years in control, and even got the presidency in 2008, and they still can't get it done.

As a former Republican who recently registered as an independent, I'm really offended by 90% of these posts.

A) We do not all think alike, just as all Dems do not think alike. I'd advise people to stop lumping everyone together if you wish to be taken seriously in debates.

B) What you consider to be a valid source is irrelevant - personally, I don't trust CNN any more than you trust Fox. Journalism these days has become more opinion than reporting, which is a shame since a free press is intended to be a check on government, not its free advertising company (this is true regardless of the party in power). My husband is a journalist, and there are few sources he trusts - "credible sources" are almost unheard of in journalism. There is a reason you cannot use newspapers or magazines in scholarly papers in college/grad school.

C) Republicans had very good reasons for disliking the HCR as it was presented and crafted by Dems. You say they tried to work with Republicans? That's laughable. They made a great show about trying, but they had enough votes to pass it had they wanted to just do it. The Republicans couldn't "obstruct" it if they wanted to. They simply made some suggestions for how to make it more palatable - and they are logical suggestions, including tort reform and cost control. I could go on, but it would fall on deaf ears.

Posted by: JG08 | October 27, 2010 2:59 PM | Report abuse

Jakesfriend1

Tis the brainless twits who keep electing them. The united states is totally full of greedy, ignorant, selfish, egotistical, lazy brainless twits. No matter what side they are on.

Posted by: linda_521 | October 27, 2010 3:42 PM | Report abuse

JakeD2, the answer to your question depends on what you mean by a "right-thinking Republican". If you mean a Republican who leans to the far right, then the answer to your question is yes. If you mean a Republican capable of objective reasoning, the answer is no.

Posted by: exco | October 27, 2010 4:12 PM | Report abuse

Anybody who observe Obama management of this country for the last two years and come away with the view that he is the worst President every, that person most have a reptile brain

Posted by: tafari1_20001 | October 27, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Anybody who observe Obama management of this country for the last two years and come away with the view that he is the worst President every, that person must have a reptile brain

Posted by: tafari1_20001 | October 27, 2010 4:25 PM | Report abuse

Anybody who observe Obama management of this country for the last two years and come away with the view that he is the worst President every, that person must have a reptile brain

Posted by: tafari1_20001 | October 27, 2010 4:26 PM | Report abuse

Gosh, I'm an independent and I truly hope obamalosi is a one-termer.

Posted by: jibe | October 27, 2010 4:36 PM | Report abuse

"I would say that, barring a bad candidate, Obama would probably lose his re-election right now. Things have never been this toxic for a President 2 years into his first term. Even Carter was in better shape in 1978."

Also, it should be noticed that Bush I was in better shape in 1990. Interestingly enough, (despite your claims) Clinton, Bush II, and Regan were all in about as bad shape as Obama two years into their presendencies, though.

Posted by: joshlct | October 27, 2010 4:42 PM | Report abuse

"Bush is blamed for the "historic economic mess" even though Dems were in control of Congress the last two years of his presidency."

Every time I read this line, and I read it everywhere, it simply reinforces the fact that while Tea Party types have incredible energy this election year, most of them are as dumb as a bag of hammers if they think a complex global economy like ours just collapses overnight because a different party got control of the Congress.

Posted by: steve-2304 | October 27, 2010 4:53 PM | Report abuse

@srw who said "It just shows that civics education (and general critical thinking) is at an all time low in the US....

_____________________________________________

Not only is this true, but this is perhaps the first time in American history (and possibly, world history) where supposedly common folk have rallied TO SUPPORT the predominantly wealthy segment of the population (see Tea Party/9/12/Glenn Beck rallies) - another striking low point in American history!

Posted by: dc1120008 | October 27, 2010 4:56 PM | Report abuse

tafari1_20001:

At lease those of us with "reptile brains" don't post the same thing three (3) times in a row and know that the word "reptile" is not an adjective.

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 4:59 PM | Report abuse

lease = least (darn Spellchecker ; )

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 5:41 PM | Report abuse

"Dems rip Mitch McConnell's "one term" remark, but will voters care?"

Voters who are about to elect GOP will care a lot....

...we are not voting for enablers

This election is a National Restraining Order about to be issued against Obama Liberals

Obama will not only be a one term President, he will have to fight his own for the right to run in the Democrat Primaries

GOP or TEA for a Recovery November

Posted by: georgedixon1 | October 27, 2010 6:14 PM | Report abuse

I remember elections as far back as Kennedy/Nixon. Never, in my memory, has a leader of the opposition (which Limbaugh is) said before the inauguration "I want him to fail." Not "In these areas his policies are not as strong as they should be." Not "I hope [some specific measure] will not be passed."

The Republicans simply can't handle the fact that they lost the election. And here's a news flash: As long as they continue to be hate-filled obstructionists who don't care enough about the American people to tell the truth, they're going to lose a lot of elections. They may get lucky once in awhile, but they won't win many.

Posted by: amstphd | October 27, 2010 6:42 PM | Report abuse

"Doesn't EVERY right-thinking Republican want to limit Obama to one-term?!"

Fortunately, there aren't enough of you to deny him a second term. Nationally, the GOP is a minority party that is becoming smaller and more regional.The sooner you accept that, the sooner the acid will stop eating your stomach lining.

Posted by: filmnoia

--------------------------------------

Really?? I am afraid you have it backwards filmnoia. Liberals only represent 20% of the population.

America gave Obama and the dems a shot but they failed so miserably that Americans are exasperated and dismayed with the neo-commie agenda of the so called... "progressives".

6 more days and the Obama experiment becomes irrelevant

http://www.gallup.com/poll/141032/2010-conservatives-outnumber-moderates-liberals.aspx

Posted by: Straightline | October 27, 2010 7:14 PM | Report abuse

amstphd:

Sorry, but Rush Limbaugh RESIGNED as the titular head of the Republican Party a long time ago (he passed the baton to Gen. Colin Powell). Did no one tell you?!

http://www.rushlimbaugh.com/home/daily/site_052009/content/01125108.guest.html

Posted by: JakeD2 | October 27, 2010 8:22 PM | Report abuse

God protect that filthy, stinking bag of dirt, Barak Hussein Obama! I want to enjoy perfect health for his ONE term. Who would want this punk as a political victim? Only the poverty pimps!

Posted by: carlbatey | October 27, 2010 9:18 PM | Report abuse

God protect that filthy, stinking bag of dirt, Barak Hussein Obama! I want him to enjoy perfect health for his ONE term. Who would want this punk as a political victim? Only the poverty pimps!

Posted by: carlbatey | October 27, 2010 9:19 PM | Report abuse

"Doesn't EVERY right-thinking Republican want to limit Obama to one-term?!"

I would hope that EVERY "right-thinking" AMERICAN would want to limit Obama to one term? Otherwise you are wishing for America's destruction.

Posted by: gun313 | October 27, 2010 9:47 PM | Report abuse

Independent = unprincipled, wishy washy, opportunistic.

O will use the next 2 years to attack Rep/teaagger intransigence & obstructionism, if he & the Dems are smart. There will be gridlock, but it will be worth it to let the country see the Reps/baggers for what they are.

I think the next 2 years will be fun!

Posted by: nyskinsdiehard | October 27, 2010 10:03 PM | Report abuse

Wow. Hope McConnell doesn't endorse Mom and apple pie. Then what would the STEAL-O-CRATS have to whine about.

Posted by: russpoter | October 27, 2010 10:08 PM | Report abuse

teaagger=teabagger. Sorry about that!

Posted by: nyskinsdiehard | October 27, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

Wow. Hope McConnell doesn't endorse Mom and apple pie. Then what would the STEAL-O-CRATS have to whine about.

Posted by: russpoter | October 27, 2010 10:09 PM | Report abuse

I get that Americans are mad and they have a right to be. But who is to blame? And the solution is one where you cut your nose off despite your face?

Posted by: jhawkerfan | October 27, 2010 10:48 PM | Report abuse

Independent = unprincipled, wishy washy, opportunistic.

Posted by: nyskinsdiehard | October 27, 2010 10:03 PM
-----------------------------------

Way to think outside of the box. So there's only two ways to think right? You either have to be for gay rights and complete government take over or pro-life and want government to be virtually non-existent. God forbid people drift from that.

Posted by: kanebrandon | October 27, 2010 11:57 PM | Report abuse

More expressions of the Pompous with delusions of adequacy. Olde Kentuck' ... ZZZzzz.

Posted by: deepthroat21 | October 28, 2010 3:03 AM | Report abuse

After next Tuesday, let's see how many times Mr. Obonehead, the pompous and arrogant @ss says to others that it's tough beans, "I won" / "...elections have consequences."

for someone who is supposed to be the POTUS, he spends more time, teleprompting, cheerleading, campaigning on the taxpayer dime, shooting hoops, playing golf, doing TV talk shows and under his watch, has increased the deficit, seized industries and has had unemployment incrase to levels not seen since FDR.

Watch his melt-down moment on Wednesday, when REAL Transformation sets in.

Posted by: Computer_Forensics_Expert_Computer_Expert_Witness | October 28, 2010 5:14 AM | Report abuse

I had been registered INDEPENDENT since 1968, but switched to Republican this year simply because Obama is worse than ANY President in my lifetime!

Posted by: JakeD2


Yes, a lot of Dixicrats did the same around that time.

Posted by: washpost18 | October 28, 2010 9:47 AM | Report abuse

Is mr. Sargent completely dumb? The whole purpose of a political party is to boot out the other party from leadership. Does he think the Repubs should become part of obama's gang? Not likely.

Posted by: jibe | October 28, 2010 11:27 AM | Report abuse

"I would hope that EVERY "right-thinking" AMERICAN would want to limit Obama to one term? Otherwise you are wishing for America's destruction."

---------

You got it backwards. The problem with the McConnell statement is that he made it clear that his TOP priority is political power. If he has to destroy American in the process, he will because his top priority isn't jobs or security or deficit reduction.

When Clinton was faced with a Republican majority, he was able to work out a compromised agenda that was good for the country but which also helped him to be re-elected. If McConnell puts his political party ahead of his country, only "rightwing-nonthinking" people should support him.

Posted by: writinron | October 28, 2010 11:34 AM | Report abuse

OMG!!!! You mean the opposition party is opposing the majority party and wants to win the next election? How depraved these Republicans are. I am quite certain this has never happened before in any country. The opposition is just supposed to bend over and ask if they are bending over far enough, right? It is outrageous that the Republicans won't just surrender and go home. How dare they oppose the Messiah! Don't they know he is the Messiah? The democrats are correct in being outraged by this unprecedented display if animosity by the opposition party.

Posted by: beachbum09 | October 28, 2010 11:40 AM | Report abuse

MITCH MCCONNELL, WHEN ARE YOU GOING TO GO OUT INTO THE PRIVATE SECTOR TO MAKE A LIVING, AND STOP LIVING ON THE GOVERNMENT PAYROLL? YOU AND YOUR WIFE AND PROBABLY EVERYONE IN YOUR FAMILY, ARE LIVING ON GOVERNMENT PAYCHECKS, YOU DID EVERYTHING POSSIBLE TO HANG ON TO THAT SENATE SEAT IN THE LAST ELECTION, BECAUSE YOU ARE TOTALLY AFRAID THAT YOU CANNOT MAKE IT IN THE PRIVATE SECTOR. MITCH MCCONNELL YOU ARE PART OF THE PROBLEM NOT PART OF THE SOLUTION.

Posted by: MadasH | October 28, 2010 12:06 PM | Report abuse

Dems should be on air with an Ad with Mcconnel's remarks displayed to GOP Lemming that not anything is going to get done for trying to destroy President Obama...

Posted by: october30 | October 28, 2010 1:00 PM | Report abuse

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