Reason #2: Obama will make the election about foreign policy

May 28, 2008

TPT continues his series on why Barack Obama won’t be US President

One of the reasons why Obama will not win in November is that he will focus on foreign policy, one of the Democrats’ weakest cards. As I have consistently said, although the American population are superfically antiwar, they are willing to listen to a case for continued involvement, provided it is made confidently and clearly. At the same time there is clear evidence that things are both improving in Iraq and that failure would embolden Iran, especially in relation to their development of a nuclear programme. In any case, in no Presidential election has the most dovish candidate ever won, unless the candidate sucessfully managed to shift the focus from foriegn policy to the domestic economy. Although McCain’s team should be doing more to shift the debate to their strength on national security, Obama and his electronic surrogates Daily Kos are doing McCain’s work for him.



  1. I think it’s quite presumptuous for you to make such outlandish generalizations about US public perception as a Brit. (I mean, it’s like you guys haven’t learned anything since the American Revolution. 😛 )

    America isn’t superficially anti-war; we’re flat-out furious about this war. Public polls consistently show that Americans view the Iraq War as a mistake by a 2:1 margin (source: pollingreport.com/iraq). A 2:1 margin isn’t superficial, it’s sweeping! It shows that the Democrats and the Independants (plus a few anti-war conservatives) are unified against the Republican Party pro-war agenda. This is a winning coalition for the Democrats should Iraq be a major issue in November, and it will.

    The Neoconservatives are warmongering fascists who want America to conquer the Middle-East just as like the Imperial British. Was McCain going to make Iraq a crucial facet to his campaign? Of course he was! Fortunately, Sen. Obama will fare better against this argument than Sen. Clinton would; Sen. Obama never voted for the war.

  2. Giacomo, this country is not flat out against this war. At best 30% hate it and another 30% have mixed feelings. You guys run the Congress, put up or shut. If this war is so bad, you guys would have ended and perhaps you guys would not have voted for it in the first place. Maybe Mr. Obama never voted for the war, but much of your party did and you refuse to end it.

  3. Ohio,

    As long as Bush continues to rule us like a king with his veto-pen, the only way Democrats can end this war is to win the White House (or impeach Bush and Cheney, but that would look way too… Republican. ;-))

  4. If the war is so unpopular, it does not matter who the President is, you override his veto. This fact is, either the Democrats know the war is not that unpopular or they just do not want to get the votes to stop the war.

  5. Ohio,

    Do you have any idea how hard it is to override a veto? It takes 2/3 the votes of the House and the Senate. There is NO WAY the Democrats have enough votes from the Republicans to do this. They’ve tried.

    This war is directly connected to George W. Bush and the blind partisanship of his Republican stooges.

  6. I am well aware of the 2 thirds needed. The war passed with over 2 thirds in the first place and if as you claim, 2 thirds of the country are dead set against the war, you should have no problem getting 2 thirds to override any veto.

  7. Our government uses a two-party system that disenfranchises third-parties. Unless we had an proportionate share of Independent congressmen as we have Independent voters (which won’t happen), the Republicans will continue to exercise an inflated-influence on this war.

    The Democrats may have the votes they need by 2008, but right now it’s impossible. Bush, and his Republican allies, have made any major effort to end combat actions in Iraq impossible.

  8. Nevermind complaining about the influences of our two system. If the war is so unpopular, I am sure you could get the Liberal Republicans as well as the Conservative Democrats to join you in ending the war. There is a reson you don’t have the vote and you dare not say too loudly what that reason is.

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