Primary challenge for Obama?

The issue keeps changing, but this notion keeps popping up on the left — this time via Huffington Post:

Pennsylvania Governor Ed Rendell predicted on Tuesday that if the president escalates America’s military involvement in Afghanistan he could very well face a primary challenger in 2012.

In an overlooked “Morning Joe” segment on Tuesday, the Pennsylvania Democrat offered his distinct brand of eccentric, conversation-driving political foresight. He couched his statement about the possibility of a primary challenge by stressing that if Obama sticks to his current plans for Afghanistan — a reduced military presence beginning in July of 2011 — there would not be political insurrection within the party.

But Rendell clearly opened up the conversation as to how much capital Obama is working with when it comes to foreign wars. And for perhaps the first time in the course of the Afghanistan debate, the specter was raised that Democrats will really take the president to task for a military commitment that is too long, too costly, or too heavy.

PAT BUCHANAN: [Anti-Vietnam sentiment] drew an anti-war candidate, Eugene McCarthy, first into the New Hampshire primary, and after he did fairly well with 42%, it drew Robert Kennedy in against their own president, tore the Democratic Party apart, and led, of course, to a Republican era. If the president is still hanging in to Afghanistan in 2011, 2012, do you see an anti-war candidate coming out of the Democratic Party?

ED RENDELL: It’s possible, Pat. It really depends on how far it deteriorates [emphasis mine]. But on the other hand, if troop withdrawal begins in 2011, if there’s some signs that we’re trying to get out of there, and I heard, I think you were talking about, if there are only 3,000 American troops, we still have a presence. But if we start to begin to reduce our presence, I think that’s probably enough to keep an anti-war candidate out of the race.”

I think a primary challenge — or at least a serious one — remains highly unlikely. Who would play the part of McCarthy — Dennis Kucinich? (That’s what I mean when I say “serious.”)

But it is inescapable that a high-profile Democrat like Rendell wouldn’t bat down Buchanan’s suggestion immediately. A huge amount of “deterioration” would have to occur by next summer, when any serious challenger would have to emerge.

I don’t see any way to read this other than an underlying discomfort with Obama on the left. That’s pretty surprising since he’s given all of their bad ideas (public option, cap and trade, etc.) a good shot. Sure, he swung and missed on some of them. But who among the Democrats would be more likely to get elected president and accomplish that agenda than Obama, who began his term with sky-high approval ratings and enormous majorities in Congress?

So, the question for me is less about an actual primary challenge, and more about the pressure Obama feels from his left — and how that will shape his approach to 2012. Not to mention Nov. 2, 2010.

66 comments Add your comment

Whacks Eloquent

July 28th, 2010
11:45 am

Wow, hard to imaging someone coming at Obama with a left-handed punch, but you never know I guess. He has obviously proven himself to be one of those evil war-mongers!

I am just hoping that Herman Cain truly does run for the GOP. Talk about a candidate you can believe in!

Belinda

July 28th, 2010
11:46 am

What about Hillary?

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
12:05 pm

“and more about the pressure Obama feels from his left ”

Kyle, Obama has already says he doesn’t care if he’s a one term president or not. He’s already done most of the damage to the country in his first year and a half. He’s on par to destroy health care, he’s taken over many industries and has wrecked the economy. To the left, that’s great! They hate this country anyway.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
12:07 pm

“ED RENDELL: It’s possible, Pat. It really depends on how far it deteriorates [emphasis mine]. But on the other hand, if troop withdrawal begins in 2011″

He’s dead wrong on that. General Petreus is there to win and Obama will not allow any troops to come home.

booger

July 28th, 2010
12:15 pm

Unless their is a dramatic turnaround in the economy, their will surely be primary challenge in 2012. It will be from a moderate who will run on fiscal responsibility. Obama has shown his colors, and their is no way he will remold himself into a fiscally responsible candidate.

CJ

July 28th, 2010
12:21 pm

Obama will begin drawing down troops no later than 12 months after the build up was completed (probably next summer). If you can find a sucker to bet against that happening, then that’s a bet you’re gonna win.

Peter

July 28th, 2010
12:22 pm

Kyle you have allot of gall writing about Obama, when here in Georgia the Republican leadership has been horrible at running out state.

Today we have the Atlanta Business Chronicle tell us Georgia is the 6th worst economy in the country…….we have an article in the AJC telling us Georgia is Failing it’ children, and we have an education that consistently ranks poorest in the country.

Time to look in the Mirror Kyle, and get a grip on reality.

Also as on blogger noted ….. YES we are still blaming George Bush and his failed policies for this mess….. the same as yes we still blame Hitler for WW II.

Yes we still blame the Republican’s for the Freddie and Fannie mess, and I will re-post the article stating them using a Republican Consulting group paying them $2 Million dollars to kill legislation that prevented any changes in the way they did business, which eventually led to the mortgage industry break down.

Look in the Mirror Kyle, and show some humility, and come up with Positive ideas for a change……something Republican’s have not done in some time.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
12:41 pm

“If you can find a sucker to bet against that happening, then that’s a bet you’re gonna win.”

CJ, I won $500 from a co-worker who claimed Gitmo would be closed last year.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
12:42 pm

“Kyle you have allot of gall writing about Obama, when here in Georgia the Republican leadership has been horrible at running out state.”

Awe, poor whittle bed wetter.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
12:42 pm

“Obama has shown his colors, and their is no way he will remold himself into a fiscally responsible candidate.”

He can’t run on anything. He has NOTHING to run on.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
12:43 pm

LOL!!!!! Jay Bookman wrote a piece calling Newt Gingrich a bigot! Gotta love the angry bed wetting soon to be losers of the left wing!

jconservative

July 28th, 2010
12:43 pm

I saw the exchange on “Morning Joe” and Rendell did not pull any punches. I had the impression he maybe had himself in mind as the challenger.

Kyle Wingfield

July 28th, 2010
12:46 pm

That, jconservative, would be a heckuva challenge.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
12:48 pm

“I had the impression he maybe had himself in mind as the challenger.”

Sweet! Twill be fun to watch the DNC implode on itself.

Obama 2012: Hey where’s everyone going?

Rendell 2012: I’m not Barack Obama

Palin: Told you so!

Don't forget

July 28th, 2010
1:13 pm

It’s the economy stupid.

CJ

July 28th, 2010
2:18 pm

Grand Forks @12:41,

I won $500 from several people when, in January 2001, I bet them that George W. Bush and the conservative (so-called) Congress would turn surpluses into deficits, explode our national debt, drive our economy into a tailspin, and slide us toward third-world status.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
2:22 pm

CJ

You’re not smart enough to make that sort of prediction. Thanks for playing, though.

Churchill's MOM

July 28th, 2010
2:37 pm

Kyle Wingfield

When you were a moderator in Dalton did you get after Nathan Deal about corruption or give him a pass?

Horrible Horrace

July 28th, 2010
2:56 pm

Peter

July 28th, 2010
12:22 pm

Time for Peter to turn off CNN and do a little independent thinking.

Horrible Horrace

July 28th, 2010
2:58 pm

Lettuce hope Obama runs on his on merits which will lead to a drastic change and the end of the Muslim Presidency.

Intown

July 28th, 2010
3:00 pm

I dunno. Seems like more wishful thinking from a conservative columnist and another excuse to worry about Obama’s supposed left-wing agenda.

But, for pure imagination’s sake, Ed Rendell was a key Hillary supporter. So, he is probably not an Obama loyalist to begin with. I agree that he would be a heckuva challenge and might be a bit of a Obama/Clinton primary rematch. Obama would probably win again. I also think/hope that the DNC will be able to retain enough discipline not to allow a serious candidate challenge an icumbent Dem president.

It will take more than Afghanistan policy to bring Obama down from his own party. It will take a failure to make a serious attempt at some real comprehensive initiative on energy/climate change (renewable energy portfolio would be enough) and immigration reform.

Averting the Great Depression, Healthcare reform and finanical reform are already in the bag.

Gerald

July 28th, 2010
3:10 pm

Grand Forks:

Another GOP person detached from reality when he complains about Obama “taking over the auto industry.” What would you have done? Allowed GM and Chrysler to go broke? Because that is what they were going to do.

And by the way, if the economy rebounds before 2012, Obama will get re-elected just like Reagan, Clinton, and George W. Bush did. All suffered bad economies in the first half of their first terms, all had low poll numbers as a result. All of them saw the economy rebound by the second half of their first terms and were re-elected. George H. W. Bush lost because the opposite happened: he had a good economy during the first half of his first term, and then it went sour the second half. (It actually began to pick up a few months before election day, but it was too late … the voters were still angry.)

So sure, the bad economy has voters angry at Obama, but it is far better to have these problems in years 1 and 2 than in years 3 and 4. Especially since if the economy does actually turn around, Obama can claim that it was his economic package that caused it. Reagan claimed that his tax cuts stimulated the economy by giving consumers and businesses more money to spend and invest. George W. Bush made the same claim 20 years later. Meanwhile, Clinton claimed that his tax INCREASE stimulated the economy by reducing the debt and giving badly needed sectors a cash infusion.

Incidentally, liberals claim that when provisions of Obamacare go in, it will actually help the economy by reducing the high health care costs that have been plaguing businesses for years. Or rather, that by shifting the healthcare burden from employers to tax payers will increase profit margins and allow employers to hire more people, resulting in more tax payers to pay into the healthcare system. That’s the logic anyway. We will see how it works. Please, no comparisons with Obamacare and the Canadian or European systems, because Obamacare isn’t single payer, and doesn’t even have a public option. It is a market-based plan similar to what right wing think tanks like the Heritage Foundation supported before they were against it. (Remember, David Frum got run out of the GOP for daring to mention that the Heritage Foundation was promoting Obamacare during the Clinton days.)

songbird

July 28th, 2010
3:12 pm

Horrace – maybe you should turn off Fox News. LMAO!

Ragnar Danneskjöld

July 28th, 2010
3:12 pm

Good afternoon all. Given the massive failures of the administration – “stimulus”, Government Motors, more corporate welfare for “green” inefficient companies, the destruction of the health care industry – it is hard to envision a re-election scenario for Chauncey, unless it is the “Ross Perot feint,” a third-party candidate who splits the vote of rational people. Democrats don’t like a loser – they can forgive anything except loss of power. Thus Kyle’s argument – a harder-left governance – does not sound beyond the realm of the imaginable.

Peter

July 28th, 2010
3:17 pm

Hey Grand Patsy…… you sound like a guy from Chicago.

Hey Horrible Horace……. your name sounds like a Republican…..great job !

CJ

July 28th, 2010
3:18 pm

Averting the Great Depression, Healthcare reform and finanical reform are already in the bag.

Speaking of averting another Great Depression, a former Fed vice chairman/Princeton economist and a former economic advisor to the McCain/Palin campaign agree with you:

“If the Bush and Obama administrations hadn’t acted, GDP would have fallen 7.4 percent in 2009 instead of 2.4 percent, the economists said in the report, titled ‘How We Ended the Great Recession.’

‘By the time employment hits bottom, some 16.6 million jobs are lost in this scenario — about twice as many actually were lost,’ they wrote.

The government’s fiscal stimulus alone will boost 2010 GDP by about 3.4 percent and add almost 2.7 million jobs to U.S. payrolls, Blinder and Zandi said.”

http://www.bloomberg.com/news/2010-07-28/blinder-zandi-say-u-s-bailouts-likely-averted-a-depression.html

CJ

July 28th, 2010
3:21 pm

Oops. I left this nugget out of my previous post (emphasis mine):

“The U.S. response to the financial crisis probably prevented a depression, slowed a decline in gross domestic product and saved about 8.5 million jobs, economists Alan Blinder and Mark Zandi said.”

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
3:42 pm

“Allowed GM and Chrysler to go broke? ”

Yep.

“And by the way, if the economy rebounds before 2012, Obama will get re-elected just like Reagan, Clinton, and George W. Bush did.”

It won’t, he’ll make sure of that.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
3:43 pm

“you sound like a guy from Chicago.”

Obama? Blago? Emmanuel? Oprah? Sosa? Who?

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
3:44 pm

“The government’s fiscal stimulus alone will boost 2010 GDP by about 3.4 percent and add almost 2.7 million jobs to U.S. payrolls, Blinder and Zandi said.””

Uh, unemployment is 10% and we’re in the middle of 2010. Find a better news source, CJ.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
3:45 pm

“maybe you should turn off Fox News. LMAO!”

maybe you should lay off the LSD. LMAO,R!!!!

left wing

July 28th, 2010
3:55 pm

I posted the other day on Mr. Wingfield’s blog about the positive effects of the stimulus plan on our economy (much to Mr. Wingfield’s chagrin). I just found a new study, entitled “How the Great Recession
Was Brought to an End” by Alan S. Blinder, a Princeton Economist and Mark Zandi, the chief economist for Moody’s.

economy.com/mark-zandi/documents/End-of-Great-Recession.pdf

Quoting from the study: “In this paper, we use the Moody’s Analytics model of the U.S. economy—adjusted to accommodate some recent financial-market policies—to simulate the macroeconomic effects of the government’s total policy response. We find that its effects on real GDP, jobs, and inflation are huge, and probably averted what could have been called Great Depression 2.0. For example, we estimate that, without the government’s response, GDP in 2010 would be about 11.5% lower, payroll employment would be less by some 8½ million jobs, and the nation would now be experiencing deflation.”

This study (which admittedly I’m still reading) is pretty strong evidence of where we’d have been under the Austrian economists “let everything crash & burn” philosophy.

Gerald

July 28th, 2010
4:06 pm

Grand Forks:

First off, had Obama allowed GM and Chrysler to go broke, Republicans would tar him for it. It is a no-win situation where you are going to get criticized no matter what you do. Conservatives would claim that Obama allowed Chrysler and GM to go broke either as part of a conspiracy to eliminate competition for a government-run automobile company, or because he hates private American industry and wants it to fail.

“It won’t, he’ll make sure of that.”

Well, it would be nearly unprecedented for the economy to stink for 5 years … the last year (or truthfully year and a half) of Bush’s presidency plus Obama’s entire presidency. We’ve had economic booms under Democratic presidents before. We’ve also had recessions under Republican presidents before, lot’s of them. (George W. Bush as a matter of fact presided over 2 of them.) Sorry, but unless there is a “double dip”, it is more likely that the economy will turn around in 2011 than not.

left wing

July 28th, 2010
4:18 pm

Gerald @ 4:06 It depends on what you mean by “Sorry, but unless there is a “double dip”, it is more likely that the economy will turn around in 2011 than not.”

The economy is growing right now. We’ve had 3 consecutive quarters of positive GDP and from an economic definition that means we’re not in recession. The problem with the economy is jobs. There’s excess capacity in the system right now, and until there’s enough demand to cause businesses the need to increase capacity, that isn’t going to change in the near future.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
4:32 pm

“Conservatives would claim that Obama allowed Chrysler and GM to go broke either as part of a conspiracy to eliminate competition for a government-run automobile company, or because he hates private American industry and wants it to fail.”

No they wouldn’t.

“Well, it would be nearly unprecedented for the economy to stink for 5 years”

Ever heard of the Great Depression?

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
4:33 pm

“The economy is growing right now.”

Yeah, in GB, Canada and Australia. Here, not so much.

Peter

July 28th, 2010
4:34 pm

Yourself the Grand Patsy…..

left wing

July 28th, 2010
4:37 pm

Grand Forks I remember you. You’re the racist. And yes, the economy is g-r-o-w-i-n-g. That’s defined as GDP increasing. Even the right wing newspapers like wsj.com concede that. So not only are you a racist, you’re ignorant too.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
5:16 pm

“Yourself the Grand Patsy…..”

That makes no sense, Peterless.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
5:18 pm

“Grand Forks I remember you. You’re the racist.”

Oh goody, another left wing retard throwing out the race card.

“And yes, the economy is g-r-o-w-i-n-g. ”

Not according to reality it isn’t.

“Even the right wing newspapers like wsj.com concede that. ”

Then you’ll have no problem providing a link.

“So not only are you a racist, you’re ignorant too.”

It must suck to be you little girl.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
5:33 pm

Left wingers beware. This guy is going to beat the snot out of Obama in 2012.

Gov. Christie on Saving Money & the Hard Decisions We Have to Make

http://www.realclearpolitics.com/video/2010/07/28/gov_christie_shine_a_bright_light_on_greed_and_self-interest.html

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
5:53 pm

“Grand Forks I remember you. You’re the racist.”

Ah, it’s okay for a left winger to call someone else a racist but………

Gotcha, Kyle.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
5:53 pm

“Grand Forks I remember you. You’re the racist.”

No, that would be your former democrat buddy, Robert Byrd.

Kyle Wingfield

July 28th, 2010
5:56 pm

“Oops” is right, CJ, but you didn’t make the most important correction. From the report itself (as opposed to Bloomberg’s characterization of it):

“When we divide these effects into two components — one attributable to the fiscal stimulus and the other attributable to financial-market policies such as the TARP, the bank stress tests and the Fed’s quantitative easing — we estimate that the latter was substantially more powerful than the former.” (emphasis added)

Read on, and you see that the the stimulus figures you highlighted are yet another recitation of the belief by Keynesian economists that if you spend X amount of money you will get Y number of jobs.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
6:08 pm

For all the left wingers who think Jesus was a liberal.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=azf173ddZ-U&videos=SmLiAsHV5wY

Oliver

July 28th, 2010
6:32 pm

Congrats gfraud,

Looks like you graduated from the remedial blog.

Grand Forks

July 28th, 2010
7:03 pm

“Looks like you graduated from the remedial blog.”

Awe, poor whittle bed wetter. Looks like Oliver’s special ed teacher’s gonna hold her back a year for drooling too much in class. I’m surprised that you can type on a keyboard. Ya know, with that webbed hand of yours.

Oliver

July 28th, 2010
7:29 pm

gfraud,

Your momma’s so dumb she tripped on a cordless phone…

@@

July 28th, 2010
8:27 pm

It wouldn’t surprise me a bit, Kyle. The left-wing of the democratic party needed a historical win to make historical inroads….all turning left. They got what they needed–an inexperienced president they could easily lead by the nose.

They’re finished with him now…under the bus he goes.

Sounds cynical, I know, but something I’ve suspected from day one.

Oliver's twist

July 28th, 2010
8:31 pm

“Your momma’s so dumb she tripped on a cordless phone…”

Gotta love it when someone makes a crack at someone else’s mom being dumb and that person makes a grammatical error. LMAO!