Let’s Do It Again
What we won when all of our people united just must not now be lost in suspicion, distrust, selfishness, and politics among any of our people.
Believing this as I do, I have concluded that I should not permit the Presidency to become involved in the partisan divisions that are developing in this political year.
With America’s sons in the fields far away, with America’s future under challenge right here at home, with our hopes and the world’s hopes for peace in the balance every day, I do not believe that I should devote an hour or a day of my time to any personal partisan causes or to any duties other than the awesome duties of this office–the Presidency of your country.
Accordingly, I shall not seek, and I will not accept, the nomination of my party for another term as your President.
— President Lyndon B. Johnson’s Address to the Nation March 31, 1968.
For the past few weeks, I really thought we would be hearing some variation of this speech from President Barack Obama. Everything that Lyndon Johnson said applies today with one more ingredient. The extra ingredient is a President who just cannot seem to catch a break. Whether it’s a tanked economy or humanitarian disasters, current or potential, Obama’s plate is always full and each situation seems to be a no-win. When you top that off with the now acceptable campaign strategy that he was not born in this country and is a secret Muslim, you really have to wonder why Obama didn’t say “I’m blowing this joint!”
Instead, Obama wrote to his supporters: “We’ve always known that lasting change wouldn’t come quickly or easily. It never does. But as my administration and folks across the country fight to protect the progress we’ve made — and make more — we also need to begin mobilizing for 2012, long before the time comes for me to begin campaigning in earnest.” It is expected that before all is said and done, Obama will have raised and spent over a billion dollars to keep his Pennsylvania Avenue address. Again, in an economy where the average Joe cannot buy himself continued employment, this is another no-win for Obama.
I voted for Obama in 2008 and I still support him but I approach his reelection campaign with mixed emotions. The reality of governance has made another “hope and change” campaign impossible. There are just too many examples where his campaign rhetoric of 2007 and 2008 was obliterated by the real job of being President. So what does he run on this time? How does he inspire? Fortunately for him, he has no serious Republican contenders in the offing. But that could change. If things get desperate, New Jersey Governor Chris Christie might be convinced to run and then there will be a distinct danger of Obama being a one term President. If the GOP can find a clear credible voice that does not cater to the nutjob fringe, 2012 will be an interesting campaign year indeed.
Holder Cries Uncle
On Monday, Attorney General Eric Holder announced that Khalid Sheikh Mohammed and several 9/11 co-conspirators would be tried in a military court. This was a 180 from his original stance that the 9/11 master mind and his cronies would be tried in a New York City civilian court. Did Holder have a change of mind? Not one bit. In fact, Holder’s announcement was full of resentment and barely veiled anger at having his hand forced.
What this means for America is justice further delayed as the military court process slowly grinds away. It also subjects the United States to international suspicion as we try KSM in what will no doubt be characterized as a kangaroo court. This outcome also provides the very dangerous precedent of the legislative branch interfering with the proper functioning of the executive branch of government. As Holder said in Monday’s press conference, Congress was in over its head in the KSM controversy. The Justice Department was in the best position to determine how to adjudicate the case.
Further complicating matters is the fact that closing Guantanamo Bay must now wait for the KSM trial to be finished. So the politicians who ensured that KSM cannot leave Gitmo will no doubt be the same politicians to criticize Obama for not fulfilling his promise to close Gitmo.
Remind me again why this man is running for a second term.