Is the Honeymoon Over?
As the course of the Obama administration continues plowing through the first 100 Days likes a bull in a china shop (or a bear through a stock market), you have to wonder if the post-inauguration high is waning.
Beyond the number of cabinet nominees that have had problems (what are we up to now, 6 or 7?), we’re starting to hear about divisiveness in the Democratic party. Historically, this is nothing new – but at the time Obama got the party’s nomination, Democrats rallied behind him, saying he was going to unite the party.
Now that he’s in office and his real agenda is starting to take shape, time and again (and again and again and again and again) his party is questioning what “The One” is doing. His budget plan is taking fire from both sides, his foreign policy actions remind me of the first time I met my nephew and he bit my finger and he gummed me, and don’t get me started on the Stimulus plan again (FDR’s administration openly admitted the New Deal was a bad call – why didn’t Obama finish that reading assignment in 9th grade history?).
Even more proof that the honeymoon is about over can be seen in polling and other “downticket” events. Look at New York’s 20th District. With Kirsten Gillibrand (Democrat) vacating her House seat to ascend to Hillary’s Senate seat, most of the Democratic party expected the seat to be easily filled by another of their own party – but as of now, they’re locked in an even tie (CNN, FoxNews). One would expect that if the Obama-magic were still in the air, as it was on November 4, Scott Murphy would have had no problem winning, especially as BHO threw his support in the race.
More telling that the honeymoon is over, Sen. Chris Dodd is now having trouble in Connecticut in the wake of AIG (which, by the way, I called that one). Since 1974, Dodd has won every election in Connecticut by double-digit margins, including his five terms in office as a Senator. Now, as AIG is blown open, Dodd is going to be embattled in his home state from now until November 2, 2010. If it wasn’t already obvious that a Republican would take a shot at raking him over the coals, Dodd will now have to start calling in favors and spending the cash in the primaries to attempt to beat Roger Pearson.
Even in polling numbers for the first 100 Days, Obama is starting to look “average.” A look at many different organizations’ tracking polls of historic approval ratings in the first 100 Days show that Obama is heading towards the low end of the spectrum, with his current mid-50% ratings, with more than a double-digit drop since he entered office. A lot of the drop has been attributed to his “real” agenda coming foward, like the Cap & Trade tax on industry (which will mean more expensive utility bills).
This past week when Obama went to Europe to pitch his economic plans to the G-20 leaders, we even heard from the traditional European socialist nations opposing Obama’s plans, calling them “too expensive.” Is it bad when a socialist nation is telling you that you’re spending too much and need to scale it back a bit?
As we move forward, I’m still convinced that we’re going to see more shady stuff come out of the White House – you can take a politician out of Chicago, but you can’t take Chicago Politics out of the politician. Just the like AIG case and the on-going stream of tax-evaders getting nominated to Cabinet posts, we’re going to continue to see crooked, back-room deals at the expense of the American Tax-payer.