President Obama wins well-deserved second term
President Barack Obama won a well-deserved second term: a campaigning triumph marked by his adroit handling of post-hurricane devastation one week before election. Mitt Romney faded away weighed down by a self-inflicted paleoconservative mindset reminiscent of cold war days.
The last fleck of Romney bounce evaporated with endorsements by two respected Republicans, General Colin Powel and New York Mayor Mike Bloomberg as well as compliments by Romney supporter Christ Christy governor of New Jersey.
The positive affirmation won by Obama was more than therapeutic. It was like a laxative that purged Romney’s imposter guise as peace dove—a shrill call harking back to the insidious WMD hunts, wanton disregard for the sovereignty of nations and the treacherous cloak and dagger internationalism of the Bush-Cheney era.
The electorate gravitated towards Obama’s palpable sense of undiminished optimism arising from the straight talk of thousands of stump speeches. Politics is mostly about perception given in manageable doses snowballing with a vengeance: obvious to the sharp-nosed polls-watchers.
Romney squandered away the rosiest winning odds a candidate had by painting himself to a corner with charlatan politics of deception as he cuddled with Republican Party’s radical right wing and then reversed gears as espousing the cause of the middle class. Romney raised the most frequently asked question regarding any candidate in recent memory: “Who is this guy, really, and what in the world does he truly believe?” He outdid the proverbial chameleons with consummate ease. Elections are won by wizards and not lizards.
The evidence about where Romney stood suggested no clear answer, or at least one that would survive Romney’s impending sojourn in the dust bin of history. Politicians routinely tailor their words to suit an audience. Romney, though, was shamelessly misleading, lavishing vastly diverse audiences with words, any words, they would trade their votes to hear.
If this portrait of a Romney willing to say anything to get elected seems harsh, we need only revisit his branding of 47 percent of Americans as freeloaders who pay no taxes, yet feel victimized and entitled to government assistance. His job, he told a group of wealthy donors behind closed doors, “is not to worry about those people. I’ll never convince them they should take personal responsibility and care for their lives.”…
Obama came through as a competent leader who, against tough odds, had guided the country through catastrophe and set a course that, while rocky, is pointing toward a brighter day. The president earned a second term for being genuine. Romney, in whatever guise, does not deserve a first.
President Obama has to steadfastly take a good stab at matters awaiting resolution: the need to present an indulgent participatory exercise in reaching out to everyone. A thoughtful and bold internationalism arrived at through a deep-felt insight into the main issues of today—that must occupy his immediate plan of action.
The second term bereft of the shackles of re-election mind-set would be the tonic needed for success in such an endeavor. Restoring decency and human values are long over due.
The issues that carried the day were women’s reproductive rights, the rapport with the burgeoning Latin vote and dyed-in-the-wool optimism that snow-balled into a contagious momentum towards the end of a long campaign.
In some ways, President Obama has lived up to the promise of living and acting with integrity and in a way befitting a man saddled with responsibilities to his country and the world amidst the usual cynicism of retail politics. In the rough and tumble of political wagering coming out unsullied is an impossible task. Obama gave his best shot.
- Asian Tribune -