Yes, just like I told you in 2009 when I got back from listening to President Obama’s First Inaugural on the National Mall, his Second Inaugural was fantastic. But we must continue to work (including #OperationBlueSweep2014) to make sure that his second term is, too.
I wrote, shortly after returning from the National Mall with Barack, Michelle and two million of my fellow Americans, about my reaction to President Obama’s First Inaugural. In a few months, while I may be doing so from the comforts of my living room or office, I will be writing about my reactions to his second.
Despite attempts by self-interested peddlers of white skin privilege and Machiavellian manipulators of languageand truth, President Barack Obama will be re-elected and will serve out a second term more successful than his first. And the next four years, sure to be filled as were the first four by Republican legislative intransigence and delegitimizing attempts by merchants of economic self-hate parading as sympathetic and sycophantic reporters of the nation’s demise, will see his agenda entrenched, his accomplishments enshrined, and his vision of an America stronger than the one he was given codified.
It has been a privilege working to re-elect President Barack Obama. Tomorrow night, as he gives his acceptance speech, listen close.
Underneath the soaring rhetoric and political acumen, you’ll hear the bell ringing for Round Two.
I’m hearing from pollsters and pundits, friends and family, that the President lost the presidency at the first debate. “Women are fleeing in droves, Romney’s like-ability is up, and the President can’t recover.”
So lying is the fashion now, and telling the truth in an understated manner is losing. I listened to, and watched, the debate. I saw an aggressive presidential candidate set his agenda; directly contradict his own campaign staff and materials; call the President of the United States a child and a liar; and get rewarded for his behavior by scores of media personalities who called his performance a “win”.
I also saw the President of the United States a little off his game. But the “weeping, and [the] moaning, and [the] gnashing of teeth” is a bridge too far. I just can’t. I can’t buy the horse-race narrative that is being constructed, that says somehow, in this instant, by establishing his political philosophy and explaining how that vision has crafted his successful policies over the last three years, he has lost because he didn’t raise his voice? That says the good he is doing (and has done) seniors and college students, women and the nation, will be lost because he didn’t chant “liar, liar, pants on fire” while on stage with the other guy?
I started a family conversation weeks ago about travel arrangements to Washington, D.C. in January, so that my children can participate in Barack Obama’s second inauguration, and I haven’t seen anything on the national stage in the last week which has convinced me that those plans are futile.
Both before and after the debate, Barack Obama is the President of the United States whose leadership:
- granted woman equal pay;
- ended Don’t ask, Don’t tell;
- advocated for marriage equality;
- required health insurance coverage regardless of pre-existing conditions;
- saved the American auto industry;
- ended the war in Iraq;
- insured that all Americans have access to health care;
- refused to relegate women’s health care and issues to second-class status;
- ordered the assassination of the mass murderer, Osama bin Laden;
- saved the US economy from the second Great Depression;
- insured that unemployment benefits were extended to all who needed them;
- stopped the deportation of thousands of youth who deserve their place at the table
- made prescription drugs affordable for those who most need them;
- kept college tuition affordable for all those who want it;
- created private-sector jobs while scaling 600,000 jobs from the federal government;
- and a whole lot more.
Standing on stage with a yelling liar doesn’t change that.
In the antebellum United States, there were plenty of white Southerners who sincerely believed in the institution of slavery. They wrote from a paternalistic, Bible-based view of humanity which excluded Africans and African Americans. It was their responsibility to maintain the peculiar institution for their own sustenance and the betterment of black people in this country. Much like the white power movement of today, they were sincere in their hate, logical in their evil, and vocal about their convictions.
Modern conservatism, however, has failed to take the example from it’s intellectual ancestors, though it takes much of its perspective from those proponents of slavery. It is based in self-interest, which currently means a perpetuation of patriarchy, an exclusion of working people, hetero-dominance, and a fierce faith in religious capitalism which rewards its devotees materially in the immediate circumstance.
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal…
I’m tired of men arguing about women’s bodies, health, etc. as if it is theirs to control. Hearing the President argue for comprehensive health insurance coverage, and the GOP leaders argue against it leaves the involved people – Women – out of the coversation.
Women should have access to birth control, and the Catholic Bishops are simply hiding their patriarchy under their vestments, and hoping no one lifts them. It’s not a religious issue, it’s not a first amendment issue, it’s a power/dominance issue. And for all the “get government out of our lives” rhetoric, conservatives are hypocritically very comfortable extending that government into uteruses across the country.
President Obama was correct two years ago, in his State of the Union address to Congress, to state that “the Supreme Court reversed a century of law to open the floodgates for special interests — including foreign companies — to spend without limit in our elections,” Obama said. “Well, I don’t think American elections should be bankrolled by America’s most powerful interests, and worse, by foreign entities. They should be decided by the American people, and that’s why I’m urging Democrats and Republicans to pass a bill that helps to right this wrong.”
They’re being criticized, though, because he and the Democratic Party are working with the Democratic SuperPAC Priorities USA Action. Another specious argument that doesn’t deal with the reality of politics in the modern age. Just as when then-Senator Obama opted out of public financing of his presidential campaign, his political opponents and detractors want him to compete without the same resources that they are entitled to. In today’s post, the Latino Rebels attempt to say that the President’s use of fundraising (that has proven so effective for the GOP candidates as they bash each other in the primaries) through SuperPACS “just confirms what is still wrong with Washington”.
As long as it is legal to raise money, whether through individual donors or SuperPACs, the President should use every means at his disposal to win reelection. He is still working, at the same time, to have the Citizens United decision negated legally, even if that means a Constitutional amendment.
It is important to recognize that the President doesn’t magically appear on ballots, and votes don’t magically appear for him. Just as he asks his supporters (in emails, lots and lots of emails!) to work each day, so is and should he for his reelection. It is fantasy to think that he should not take part in the politics of politics.
He is the President of the United States. And he’s working to get a second term. Fundraise away!