Remember in 2008 when Barack Obama campaigned on the need to get big money out of our political process? That was funny, wasn’t it? If you didn’t realize how funny, wait until you see what’s just been revealed.
Last Friday when I was talking with Indiana Congressman Mike Pence, I asked him about the issues arising with President Obama making “official presidential trips” (meaning they are financed by tax dollars) that have a very strong look and feel of campaign trips – for instance, a college campus tour, in addition to “slow jamming the news” on Jimmy Fallon’s Late Night show.
I can understand the ambiguity a little bit, because certainly in an election year, every presidential speech and action is going to be scrutinized in the context of his campaign for re-election. But I also think that such ambiguity can be exploited and abused by the President, and according to a new study that’s out, Obama’s misuse of this presidential privilege is unique because his focus has seemingly been on re-election alone.
Here’s the shocking scoop:
Barack Obama has already held more re-election fundraising events than every elected president since Richard Nixon combined, according to figures to be published in a new book.
Obama is also the only president in the past 35 years to visit every electoral battleground state in his first year of office.
The figures, contained a in a new book called The Rise of the President’s Permanent Campaign by Brendan J. Doherty, due to be published by University Press of Kansas in July, give statistical backing to the notion that Obama is more preoccupied with being re-elected than any other commander-in-chief of modern times.
Doherty, who has compiled statistics about presidential travel and fundraising going back to President Jimmy Carter in 1977, found that Obama had held 104 fundraisers by March 6th this year, compared to 94 held by Presidents Carter, Ronald Reagan, George Bush Snr, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush combined.
Since then, Obama has held another 20 fundraisers, bringing his total to 124. Carter held four re-election fundraisers in the 1980 campaign, Reagan zero in 1984, Bush Snr 19 in 1992, Clinton 14 in 1996 and Bush Jnr 57 in 2004.
Look at that Reagan number: zero. Is that because that money wasn’t a factor in those elections? It’s tough to make that case given the amount that was spent in those campaigns. What it is more likely to reveal is that President Reagan boasted a confidence in his job performance that made fundraising lesser of a concern to him than running the operation of the federal government. If that’s the case, what should Obama’s 104 fundraisers say to us?
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The truth is that these numbers fit perfectly with what we’ve known about Obama from the start: he is not a leader, he is a campaigner. The man had no executive experience when running for president in 2008. He was a community agitator who excelled at Satanist Saul Alinsky’s tactics of rabble rousing a group of people into demanding some kind of change from the powers that be. In other words, if you wanted money for a playground at your community center, Obama was the guy to bring in. If you wanted someone to run your community center, he was not.
That explains perfectly what we’ve seen over the last four years: an endless cycle of blaming the predecessor, pointing fingers at Congressional opposition (even when that opposition was a bare minority or when the opposition is uninvolved in the circumstance – like the Democrats unwillingness to pass a budget that doesn’t require a single Republican vote to do), public appearances meant to promote personal popularity, elaborate parties and fundraisers – all while the country staggers with an appalling lack of economic stewardship and international leadership.
And this reality fits perfectly with the new data coming out in this book. The United States is in desperate need of adult leadership, and that’s not in the Obama DNA. But taking other people’s money sure is.