In 1992 Clinton's theme was "it's the economy, stupid."
Well, in this debt ceiling debate, for the GOP, we need to realize that it call comes down to 2012.
- Obama is NOT going to sign an extension of the Bush tax cuts during his second term. Only with a new president in 2012 will that happen.
- Obama is NOT going to make significant entitlement reform. Only with a new president in 2012 will that happen.
- Obama is NOT going to reduce regulation. Only with a new president in 2012 will that happen.
- Obama is NOT going to repeal Obamacare. Only with a new president in 2012 will that happen.
- Obama is NOT going to turn around the economy. Only with a new president in 2012 will that happen.
Here is what Obama can and will do
- Obama will veto extension of the Bush tax cuts. To prevent a tax increase, the GOP needs to win in 2012.
- Obama will appoint liberal judges who will raise the cost of business, overturn state laws protecting marriage, and will make and not interpret the law; only a GOP win in 2012 can prevent this.
- Obama will block oil drilling, and continue new regulations to "protect" the economy at the harm of business. Only a 2012 GOP win will prevent this.
- Obama will never sign a budget that balances the budget. Only with a new president in 2012 will that happen.
- Obama will never sign a bill streamlining the tax code. Only with a new president in 2012 will that happen
The fact of the matter is that, as Bush said when pushing for his tax cut package, "elections have consequenses." 2012 will have consequenses.
In 2010 the GOP ran some good candidates, and some who lost. Sharon Angle, for example, lost. Another candidate who was -- frankly--- less conservative could have won. That candidate would not be perfect, but would be better than Reid. Now, I'm not saying we should always run the less conservative candidate. Specifically, I'm thinking of Deleware, where maybe it was just a choice of two liberals. However, let's use another example. In 2012, McCain was not the best nominee. Not the most conservative. But, he would-have-been better than Obama. Not great. In-fact, probably a poor. But he would never have signed onto Obamacare.
Going into 2012, we have a question. Do we want to win? Do we want to win big enough so that we can make real changes? Or do we want to face Obama and a Democratic Senate?
Its 2012, stupid. That is what it comes down to.
In these debt negotiations, the GOP needs to focus on letting Obama have his debt risen. Let him own the economy. Let him be blamed.
The GOP should pass its plan. But then when it comes down to it, the GOP must cave. It must cave and show that it is not going to cause a default. It must then go into 2012 and say, as Bush did in 2000 of Clinton, that "Obama had his change, he failed to lead, we will."
Obama is president. Put the duty of leading on him. In 2012, ask Americans if they are better off. Ask them if they think Obama has led. Ask if they support havin their taxes raised. Put forward a new plan. Pressent that new option to the American people. A plan that will not lose voters; but will allow voters who do not like Obama to vote Republican.
The election needs to be about Obama; not the GOP. Not the House, but rather than president.