wOw’s Question of the Week

The triumphant elimination of Osama Bin Laden has buoyed our country’s spirits. What does this achievement mean for President’s Obama’s future? Has it secured his chances of taking back the House? Given him the leverage to win the 2012 election? What, if anything, could possibly derail him?

LIZ SMITH: I think the Democrats under the revitalized President will take back power (barring some unforseen event) as long as they dynamically explain the Tea Party and the GOP to voters, telling them the truth about Big Oil, and Big Oil’s bought and paid for Republicans. Also pointing out how the GOP desires the death to Medicare and every other social program. And how the GOP is willing to trade common sense for threatened power grabs. Yes, the President rides high on the Osama strike, but he merely needs to speak out more forcefully and the truth will set us free.

This is a most disgraceful political moment in our history.  If not Obama, then what is the electorate thinking? I believe he can clear away the myths about the deficit, planning and securing the future with clean energy jobs, making the wealthy pay their share.  Of course anything might derail Obama…more bad weather, a terror attack, a scandalous mistep. But this very fine American leader is our own best choice.

I wanted Hillary, I got Obama. I am satisfied and I believe Hillary is as well.

JOAN COONEY: Oh my heavens, almost anything could derail him. With the economy still bad and unemployment virtually unchanged and national debt sky high with no agreement politically about solutions, Obama will have a tough job convincing Americans that he should be reelected. Further, I don’t think the killing of Bin Laden will be remembered a year from November. If some far right kook is nominated, that is one thing — but if Mitch Daniels or Mitt Romney or some other reasonable person is picked, it will be a very tough race for Obama with no certainty at all that he’d prevail.

CANDICE BERGEN: Anything could derail the President. Never underestimate this country’s extreme right wing. They cannot stomach his being in the White House. But it had absolutely raised his approval rating here and around the world. A gutsy, flawlessly handled operation. I’m even reading a book on SEALs because of it!

19 Responses so far.

  1. avatar Bonnie O says:

    Gosh – the question posed has been asked on just about every cable news program plus all the Sunday shows.  I think the correct answer is “probably not”.  And why not?  Because the election is more than a year away.  Secondly, the 2012 election will be a refrendum upon the President’s performance with regard to the economy and unemployment.  And, in my opinion, those are the issues on which the President should be judged.

    I am very glad that the President was able to make the decision for the Navy Seals to enter Pakistan and kill bin Laden.  However, the tracking of bin laden has been a decade long search carried out by the CIA and the military.  If bin laden has not been captured or killed during Obama’s term in office, I do not think the electorate would have judged Obama unfairly on that issue.

    The media will be openly pro-Obama as they were in 2012.  So the GOP is going to have to consolidate solidly around their candidate once the nominee is chosen.  The President’s economic policies have failed and the beginning reports re Obamacare are not good inasmuch as the savings promised from OBamacare are not on track;  in fact, the predictions as to the revenue neutrailty of the bill is now acknowledged to be a false promise.

    President Obama is loved by many of his followers;  to them he is more than a political figure.  But I do believe that the more pragmatic Independent voter is lost to the Democrats for 2012.  The Independent voter will probably join with the Libertarian voter and vote for the GOP candidate.  The Tea Party voter will also vote Republican unless they run a candidate of their own;  in which case, the party that will suffer will be the GOP.

    Bin Laden’s death will not be a significant factor in the Presidential race.  If Obama, however, touts the death of bin Laden as an achievement of his Administration without acknowledging all the work and sacrifice made by the previous Administration and the intelligent agencies and the military, than many many voters will turn against OBama and think of him as an egotist.  Not  good thing for a politican to be labelled.

  2. avatar KarenR says:

    If bin Laden comes up during the campaign what will be remembered is that Obama got him and Bush was a friend of the family.

    I doubt it will be much, if any, of a factor though simply because the GOP’s circular firing squad will determine the race long before election day.

  3. avatar Baby Snooks says:

    Liz Smith seems to overook the fact that Big Oil has bought just as many Democrats as it has Republicans. And the bottom line is when you really look at at Obama’s record he merely has continued the Bush policies.  Most don’t really look. 

    As for the “triumpant eliminatino of Osama bin Lden” it was in violation of international law – it is interesting that it bothered Democrats when Bush violated international law but not when Obama did. That sums up the problem with the partisan politics which have divided this country.  “Okay when I do it, not okay when you do it.”  Not okay when anyone does it.

    The story of “who knew what when” changes daily.  Bottom line is someone decided Osam bin Laden could be traded off finally. Unfortuantely what was also traded off was the supposed respect for Islam.  Even the most henious of men are allowed proper burial in Islam.  Burial at sea is not proper burial.  We have opened up yet another Pandora’s Box.

    Part of the Pandora’s Box is the political agenda behind the death of Osama bin Laden. And so it will be a major issue of the campaign.  Whether anyone sees it or not. Most won’t.

    • avatar KarenR says:

      Detroit area imams felt bin Laden’s death was justified and didn’t have a problem with his burial at sea as he was a criminal:

      A group of Detroit area imams say they are glad U.S. Navy Seals killed Osama bin Laden over the weekend. The imams representing different groups within southeast Michigan’s Muslim community say Osama bin Laden’s death was justified.

      Dawud Walid is with the Council on American Islamic Relations. He says bin Laden was a criminal for his acts of terrorism. Some have questioned whether bin Laden’s burial at sea may have disrespected Islamic tradition. Dawud Walid disagrees.

      “Osama bin Laden did the ultimate disrespect when he attacked churches and mosques…and when he killed thousands of Americans at the World Trade Center. That’s the ultimate disrespect. Not whether he was buried on the water or under the earth.”

      FYI the US Armed Forces *do have* imams in their chaplaincy

      • avatar Baby Snooks says:

        I’m glad you have luck with links because the last few I have attempted never made it. 

        The New York Times is running a story today about how in Libya the enemy is still accorded a proper burial under the laws of Islam.  Perhaps some Muslims in this country  are merely trying to “accommdate” the political situation.

        • avatar KarenR says:

          Many (perhaps even most) Muslims in this country recognize that bin Laden didn’t remotely behave as a Muslim. In fact many Muslims in this country resent his warping and misrepresentation of their religion.

          • avatar Baby Snooks says:

            That may be but there are other Muslims in the world who feel different and they are the the ones who hate us to begin with. Moreso now.  And that hatred is in great part feeding the rise of Islamic fundamentalism throughout the world. 

            But fundamentalism has existed in Islam from the beginning. Children in Saudi Arabia are taught that the West is evil.  The clerics in Saudi Arabia actually rule Saudi Arabia. Not the Saud family. And the Saud family walks a tightrope with regard to its relationship with the West.  Anyone who thinks otherwise should refresh their memory with “Death of a Princess” which reminded one and all that the clerics rule in Saudi Arabia. And they rule by strict adherence to the Qu’ran and Sha’ria law.

          • avatar KarenR says:

            Fundamentalism exists in all religions including the Abrahamic faiths which, in their purest forms, do not preach hate or violence.

            What does “Sharia Law” really mean?:


            and yes, they did get support when the Floridian flamethrower showed up:

  4. avatar Maggie W says:

    If the Republican party would spend time embracing a solid candidate with a specific platform, perhaps in Chicago David Plouffe and David Axelrod might change their 2012 campaign strategies and in a more agressive manner.   Instead the GOP candidates continue to focus on many non issues.  Bachmann continues to try to impress us with her recall of history and what on earth was Trump trying to do?  Newt carries more baggage than Continental.  Mitt spends his waking moments defending himself.
    The Republicans did a fine job of convincing many Americans that Obama was a disinterested commander in chief, so he will always get some mileage from the Bid Laden raid.  Meanwhile, anything can erupt and probably will.   There are many real issues that need to be addressed.  Instead, many voters are now convinced that thieving illegals are crossing our southern borders daily and in mad droves.  Think of lemmings. We do need total immigration reform, but fear tactics are juvenile.  Since 2001, border patrol agents have more than doubled from 9,000 to 20,000.  Deportations have also increased from around 165,000 persons to more than 365,000 persons. ( DHS).  Not one terrorist who sits in an American prison crossed by way of our southern borders.  There is more work to be done but deal with facts.

    Give Americans the facts about immigration, the economy, education, etc., and allow them to use those facts to determine the best person to sit in the Oval Office.  I really don’t give a rat’s furry behind about what kind of sneakers Michelle wears or whether Obama was born under a tree somewhere in Kenya.

  5. avatar Lila says:

    Oh, please. It was a great outcome showing appropriate use of intelligence, use of State Department and military planning and advice, and acceptance of several kinds of significant risk both real and diplomatic.

    But the announcement immediately led to accusations of a hoax; of Monday-morning quarterbacking questioning the details of the SEALs’ actions; questioning and criticizing what was done with the body; blah… blah…. blah.

    He’s the President, he made the calls based on military and State Department advice, he got an outstanding result. Still not enough for the naysayers.

  6. avatar Bonnie O says:

    In the long run, the killing of bin Laden will be seen as a Navy Seal achievement and the President’s participation in the “go ahead” decision will be seen as only a minor role.  The fact that Obama took enormous political risk, for a Democrat, will soon fade from most memories.  The fact that he was President when bin Laden was killed will remain in the collective memories of those in the Middle East who were and are pro bin Laden.  The President’s political capital in the Middle East, if he ever actually had any, is now depleted.  And his relationship with the Israeli government has put the USA/Israel relationship at its lowest level since the United Nations created the county.

    • avatar Anais P says:

      If you refuse to give Obama any credit for the bin Laden operation, as he authorized but did not fire a gun in the bin Laden operation, then you should not blame bin Laden for 9/11, as the terrorist mastermind  did not fly any airplanes that day. I think the fact that this operation occurred during the Obama administration effectively eliminates any hopes by the GOP to pin the tag of “soft on terrorism” on the President. With the Wall Street Journal critical of the only reasonable Republican in the race, Mitt Romney, I doubt Obama will be upset in 2012.

      • avatar Bonnie O says:

        Anais P –  You have misread my comment.  I do not refuse to give Obama credit for the bin Laden operation.  In fact, I made a specific point of mentioning the political risk he took was enormous.  Unfortunately, as with most Obama supporters, you made the standard misrepresentation of overstating any critical comments made of the President.  Why is that, I wonder?

        President Obama already has a reputation as being thin-skinned with reference to criticism.  He is also carrying around a reputation of being an elitist.  As I wrote earlier, it is my opinion that the death of bin Laden will not have any significance regarding  the 2012 Presidential election.  Obama will be judged on his actions with reference to the economy.  I might agree with what someone here wrote earlier that much of Obama’s foreign policy is the same as that of the former President.

        • avatar D C says:

          “He is also carrying around a reputation of being an elitist”  What president HASN’T been called an elitist, besides maybe Jimmy Carter??? 

          • avatar Bonnie O says:

            From the last half of the last century, there would be Truman, Eisenhower, Nixon, Ford, Carter, Reagan, and Bush the younger  none of whom were elitists.  Bush #41 was to the manor born but he was always “one of the people”.  Clinton not to the manor born acted in some circumstances as an elistist … Clinton was both an “is” and a “not”.

  7. avatar crystalclear says:

    President Obama gets the credit from “making the call” and I, for one, will give him the kudos.  Based on the intelligence he was receiving with a few ups and downs he was the one who said, “Let’s get it done.”    So, to all above and their comments, I believe both President Obama and President George Bush deserve all the credit.    It was the best team work I’ve witnessed in many years coming out of the White House.

    Killing bin Laden gives President Obama a big bump as they say.   I fear he will need much more than a big bump in order to win the election.   I’m so desperate to get Obama out in 2012 I might vote for that damn independent!   My take is that Obama blew himself up early after his inauguration spending too damn much time on Obamacare while the rest of the country was sinking.  

    Now look at what he is doing to Israel.   No one has to bury Obama in 2012 ’cause he’s been digging his own grave since early  2009.   We just need to leave him alone and he’ll be so far down in the hole in 2012 that we won’t be able to find him.   The “economy” will do him in.

    • avatar crystalclear says:

      Haha, I got so fired up I said “might vote for that damn independent” when I really meant to say “that damn libertarian!”      Being fired up is fun.

  8. avatar Ting queen says:


    • avatar crystalclear says:

      Okay, Ting queen, I just thought it through.   What I came up with is that Osama attacked Spain, England, Germany and ??????  others.     Now what?