Friday, September 02, 2011

Obama Wants to Talk to Independents, But Is He Listening?

Lots of people want to give advice to Pres. Obama. But who is he listening to? If he were listening to independent voters (now clearly one third of the electorate, even according to Rasmussen), he might change his tune -- America needs political reforms like open primaries in order for ordinary people to be heard. Hey, Mr. President, could you lend a hand? It just might change your game!


OBAMA
  • How Obama Can Be a Non-Partisan President (Jacqueline Salit, Huffington Post)  For many independents, it's not enough for Obama to simply criticize Congressional leaders for their partisan intransigence. He has to show that he's willing to back certain structural changes in the political process that make such intransigence more difficult. This means taking a stand in support of open primaries where independents can vote, which are currently under fire from right wing Republicans. And, imagine the shock waves that would follow an Obama appointment (in consultation with leaders of the independent movement) of two independents to vacant seats on the Federal Election Commission.
  • Obama's problem? No one fears him (By Roland S. Martin, CNN Contributor) Maybe White House senior adviser David Plouffe and campaign manager Jim Messina think the tactic the president is taking is appealing to independent voters. But the unwillingness to go to the mat on anything has angered some of his ardent supporters, who feel the White House will leave them hanging in the wind when it's time to fight.
  • How Obama could be the leader in the room (By David Gergen, CNN Contributor) There is a third course that does seem to have at least a possibility of working. That is: Let the president come forward with a detailed plan that he favors. Having taken the lead, let him then ask the Republicans to come to the White House in 10 days with their own plan. (Boehner is giving a speech on the economy and jobs in Washington on September 15.) And then let them sit down at Blair House and see if they can agree on a package -- three items from the Democratic column, three from the Republican.
  • CNN Poll: 8 in 10 think we're in a recession (By: CNN's Adam Levy) Don’t expect Republicans to stop demanding more budget cuts though. Almost half of GOPers surveyed say deficit reduction is just as important as creating more jobs, including those who identify themselves as tea party supporters. Democrats strongly disagree. Eighty-three percent want the president to focus more on job growth, and two-thirds of independents say the same.
  • South Carolina Independents Would Vote for Colbert Over Obama (By Adam Clark Estes, National Journal) With the support of 24 percent of the state's independent votes, Colbert is beating Obama's 22 percent but he's still trailing Republican frontrunner Rick Perry by three points.

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