It happened to Kerry. Can it happen to Obama? Nope says Margaret Carlson.
Obama’s belief system — in that hopey-changey business and the post-partisanship thing — has been altered by reality. He doesn’t seem as inclined to turn the other cheek, as he did in the debate about the debt ceiling.
Bring it on, as Bush would say. In an ad for the Obama campaign, Bill Clinton makes the strongest case for the “decider-in-chief,” who would be dog meat if the mission had failed. “Suppose the Navy SEALs had gone in there, and it hadn’t been bin Laden. Suppose they’d been captured or killed. The downside would have been horrible for him.”
Kerry may have been Swift-Boated, but Obama is not going to be SEALed. Republicans are used to calling Democrats cowards and worse. Not this time. Republicans have the squishy, soft, cosseted, consensus-building candidate, while Democrats have the fighter. Finally.
This is true. As Carlson points out in her piece (and David Corn outlined in his book Showdown), Biden and Defense Secretary Robert Gates were both skeptical about the bin Laden kill mission succeeding. Jimmy Carter’s failed 1980 Iran rescue as well as the Black Hawk Down 1993 disaster in Somalia were worrisome reminders of what could go wrong. Despite the skepticism, Obama issued the kill order. It’s not too hard to imagine how a failed mission would have played out in the conservative media.
Given what Romney has already said about his reluctance to go into Pakistan to take down bin Laden, imagine the same scenario with Romney at the helm. There is no way Romney would have risked his good name and gone against the wishes of his Defense Secretary and VP. After checking in with his attorney and stockbroker to determine his personal liability, the mission would have been called off.
But here’s the thing…who gives a damn what Romney would or would not do? The Commander-in-Chief is a guy named Obama and he’s already shown what he’s made of. Let the right throw all the crap they want at him. If ever there was a Democrat prepared to deal with the next six months of lies, innuendo and misinformation, it’s this guy. And if there’s any good that’s come out of three years of Republican bullshit politics, it’s that they’ve toughened up this President to the point where there is virtually nothing more they can say or do which can possibly be worse than what they’ve already said or done.
Let the games begin.