These days I think most Obama actions can be explained by a desire to ward off the ennui that so clearly torments him during the course of being the most powerful man in the world. The President is visibly bored by the Constitutional process, the fight against ISIS, and the need to actually convince anyone to adopt his point of view in order to get anything done. As a result, he occasionally lashes out with various unilateral actions that he knows will likely be undone as soon as he leaves office just to provoke a reaction from his perceived opponents.
However, it appears that the President has actually been rousted his bored stupor in order to help shape the 2016 elections. He is going to host a town hall with CNN on Thursday about guns in a clear effort to continue his push to make the 2016 elections about gun control.
It is, to say the least, a novel and interesting approach to winning a nationwide election, for Democrats. The conventional wisdom in America has long been that when the election is about the economy, Democrats are likely to win, whereas when the election is about national security, Republicans are likely to win. There’s not really a compelling reason to believe that 2016 will be much different in this respect, as Americans have indicated that they strongly disapprove of the Obama administration’s handling of terrorism.
What’s interesting, however, is that Obama and Clinton are not out having town halls to convince the American public that the economy is doing well, as compared to how it was doing in 2009. According to the most recent Quinnipiac poll, “gun policy” is the most important issue to a whopping 4% of Democrats – even after the recent full court press by Obama, Clinton, and the media. Among all voters, gun policy is rated as nearly the least important issue in all of America, regardless of whether they agree with the Democrat approach to guns or not.
Meanwhile, the economy/jobs continues its virtually uninterrupted run as the top issue for American voters, followed by foreign policy. The fascinating thing is that Democrats actually have a lot they can say with respect to the economy, in terms of talking point numbers.
Instead of focusing on these, they seem intent on making this election about two issues Americans have demonstrated time and again they do not care about: guns and climate change. If Democrats continue talking about issues that people don’t care about while Republicans are talking about the economy and terrorism, it’s not difficult to predict how this election will ultimately turn out.