I remember in 1996 when Bill Richardson, making the media rounds at that year’s Democratic National Convention, said the Latino vote would be key to reelecting Bill Clinton.
In 2008, I endorsed Mitt Romney for president during the Republican primary because I believed that he had the right experience and temperament to be a great leader of the party and of the country.
Now that the conventions are over, the general election begins in earnest. I believe that President Obama will win reelection in November; however, it might be interesting to examine competing scenarios for how each side could lose.
During the Democratic National Convention, Benita Veliz made history during her prime time appearance by being the first undocumented immigrant, or DREAMer, to speak before a national party convention. Her speech was short but graceful: an American story illustrating perseverance and well-deserved academic accomplishments. She praised President Obama’s executive action to lift the shadow of deportation from young undocumented immigrants. The atmosphere of inclusion in Charlotte contrasted sharply with the rhetoric in Tampa at the Republican National Convention. Whether that translates into a substantial bump with the Latino electorate, the polls will soon tell. What is clear, however, is that the DREAM Act and Dreamers, like Benita, are heavily influencing policy positions and party platforms.
‘Tis the season of elections racing, ideas battling, and visions competing. The Republican and Democratic National Conventions have laid out their platforms, which is really just a political science word for playbooks. While animating politics with sports metaphors may be excite the contest, especially since presidential elections and the summer Olympics occur the same years, the stakes in this election are much higher than just another golden Super Tuesday win.
On Tuesday, Beau Biden penned an op-ed making the case for another four more years of Barack Obama and Joe Biden. He invoked a saying of his grandfather, one which the vice president frequently repeats on the campaign trail: “Don’t tell me your priorities. Show me your budget, and I’ll tell you your priorities.”
I couldn’t agree more with that statement. Indeed, the Obama administration’s budget would speak volumes about their priorities—if they actually had a budget. But they don’t. Even the Democrat-controlled Senate has rejected President Obama’s budget proposals.
The comparative diversity of the Democratic Party is fully on display in Charlotte.
When Concerned Veterans for America polled U.S. military veterans last month to learn more about their top concerns, the economy and the national debt overwhelmingly topped the list. Seventy-two percent of vets cited these as their top issues for 2012.
French enlightenment writer Voltaire once wrote that “It is dangerous to be right when the government is wrong.” This narrative is playing out for the fall election, as voters face two presidential candidates with vastly different philosophies on the role of government.
Looking back to the 2008 campaign, then-Senator Obama touted his services as a community organizer as a qualification for public office. With little or no effort done by the media to track the impact that his organizing had on the lives of those he tried to help, many voters were left with the impression that his work did some good for those who needed help. But had his record been scrutinized, we would have learned that community organizers don’t actually solve problems.
As the eyes of the political world turn to Charlotte this week for the Democratic National convention, speculation about the fate of North Carolina’s 15 electoral votes on Nov. 6 continues. Depending on who you ask or which electoral map you’re consulting, the Tar Heel State is a safe bet for Mitt Romney one day and a toss-up the next; one week it’s the moderate “New South” and the next it’s leaning back toward its Deep South neighbors. In 21 of the 22 polls conducted by Public Policy Polling since the 2010 election, President Obama and Romney have been within 3 points of each other, and several other recent polls show a statistical dead heat. One certainty remains: North Carolina’s status as THE battleground state to watch is here to stay.