What I took from Obama’s State of the Union is a political strategy for the next ten or fifteen years. Much of what he said he wanted to accomplish are things Republicans simply cannot yield on. I think to some extent he picked out positions they detest.
He knows these issues are popular with the public. He wants Republicans to turn him down.
Bill Clinton was interested in finding common ground with Republicans. Governors instinctively do this. Clinton’s strategy may have been a popular during his time, it is not necessarily a good strategy for today.
The redistricting strategy of Republicans, putting like minded voters in the same Districts, gave them the House for the next several years. But, I think Republican big thinkers never intended for these House seats, held by intellectual lightweights, to become the face of the Party. Obama likes this face.
When Obama forces Republicans to turn him down on social/religious issues like immigration, gays, birth control and abortion over and over again, the Party cannot get off square one. It can easily hold onto a majority in the House, but it is increasingly harder to win broad elections like the Presidency and Senate seats.
Democrats figure they can remain a few points ahead in the political game by holding onto the Presidency and the Senate. Remaining ahead by a few points for a long time probably is better than being ahead several points for a short time.
Red River Freethinkers meeting, Sunday, Feb. 17, 1 PM, Plains Art Museum, 704 1st Ave N., Fargo. Visitors welcome.