A FADING COALITION? – AT 8:55 A.M. ET: It will have to be proved out during the campaign, but there is much talk about the fracturing of the Obama coalition. The Dems are starting to fight among themselves. They apparently didn't build this ship with enough lifeboats. From The Hill:
Fissures have opened over everything from tax policy and former President Bill Clinton’s off-message comments to recriminations following the party’s fiasco in the Wisconsin recall, which some say should have been avoided.
Democrats disagree over the wisdom of Obama’s attacks on Republican Mitt Romney’s private equity background at Bain Capital and are split over the proposed construction of the Keystone XL pipeline from Canada’s vast oil sands.
The divides are opening just as Republicans appear more unified, which underlines the danger for Democrats and highlights an abrupt reversal in the two major parties’ fortunes.
Just a few months ago, Republicans were absorbed in a bitter primary battle, and mutual attacks among GOP hopefuls filled the airwaves.
But last week’s news that Romney and the Republicans had outperformed Obama and the Democrats in May fundraising suggested the party of the right was coalescing, as did news of weekly strategy calls between Romney’s campaign and GOP leadership.
Wisconsin, where GOP Gov. Scott Walker trounced a recall effort last week, exposed tensions between Washington Democrats, including the president, and the labor movement.
Many in Washington thought the recall was a bad idea from the start, something reflected in Obama’s reluctance to get involved at any level beyond his Twitter feed.
The lack of effort added to disillusionment among union activists already unhappy with the low priority the White House had accorded to issues such as “card check” that they hold dear.
After the result, liberals formed a circular firing squad.
COMMENT: I'd add something else to this – a kind of undercurrent of buzz hinting that a growing number of people in the Democratic Party don't like the president personally, finding him cold and arrogant. Personal relationships mean as much at the presidential level as anywhere else. The president, almost like Nixon, seems to have few real friends and very little interest in actual people. He seems to live, at times, in an abstract world.
But the Dems are pros at running campaigns. They may iron out these problems. We have to run as if we're running against the best campaign in history. That's the only way to do it in politics.
June 11, 2012