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June 18, 2012

You've Been Waiting For It, And It's Finally Here

WaPo: Can any president succeed in today’s political world?

Lost in the chatter about whether President Obama will win a second term in November is an even bigger — and perhaps even more important — question: Is it possible for a president — any president — to succeed in the modern world of politics?

Consider this: We are in the midst of more than a decade-long streak of pessimism about the state of the country, partisanship is at all-time highs and the media have splintered — Twitter, blogs, Facebook and so on and so forth — in a thousand directions all at once.

Add those three major factors up and what becomes clear is that any president elected (or reelected) this November has slim hopes — or at the most a very narrow window — for political success.

This is usually the last position the media takes before jumping off the bandwagon completely.

More bad news for O: Consumer Confidence took a dive this morning. This is a decent indicator of an incumbent's reelection chances.

Thanks to @jeffemanuel for the WaPo story.

Update: Good catch by CJ.

Washington Post, 1980:

The presidency has grown, and grown and grown, into the most powerful, most impossible job in the world.

...

Voters have lowered their expectations of what any president can accomplish; they have accepted the notion that this country may never again have heroic, larger-than-life leadership in the White House.

Some voters have entirely discarded textbook notions about presidential greatness and believe that Carter is doing as good a job as anyone could in facing new and difficult problems and in coping with an independent and restive Congress.


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posted by JohnE. at 10:45 AM

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