The Year That Was in Politics
It would be nice to feel, after one of the most costly and abrasive presidential campaigns in our nation's history, that the fog has cleared from the miasma of the year 2012, revealing bright prospects for a better 2013. It would also be nice to know that a cure for cancer has been found.
But the main political event of this year -- the re-election of President Obama by a somewhat better margin than had been anticipated by most -- has left him embarking on his second term with most of the economic and political challenges of the past year clinging to him, and to the country.
While the election slightly enhanced Democratic strength in
The year saw a mixture of natural and man-made calamities -- from Hurricane Sandy and Midwest and Far West forest fires to the horrendous shootings in
The election's outcome revealed the growth of political power among minorities, ethnic groups and women benefiting Obama, while imperiling the future of the
The election also confirmed the deleterious effect of unleashing a flood of unlimited, allegedly independent campaign funding by the
The further emergence of super PACs funded significantly by wealthy donors further polluted campaign discourse, as tens of millions of dollars funded nonstop radio and television advertising for both sides. Often the formal campaign managers expressed dismay, claiming helplessness to combat it -- through crocodile tears.
The epidemic of campaign debates, first amid a field of mostly mediocre Republican candidates including has-been
Those fall debates between Obama and Romney offered unparalleled and possibly decisive drama. The president was unexpectedly unimpressive in the first of them, requiring a stronger argument from Vice President
Obama recovered in the next two presidential debates, capitalizing on Romney remarks that seemingly characterizing nearly half of Americans as moochers of government handouts and "gifts" in a society mired in class warfare. Old-fashioned campaigning around the country continued but was overshadowed by the debates, the avalanche of airwave advertising and at the close by a superior Obama "ground game."
The overwhelming support of Hispanic, Asian and African-American voters for Obama obliged many leading Republicans to issue election post-mortems declaring their party's need to broaden its base. They particularly called for addressing immigration reform along the southern gateway for Central and South American Latinos seeking to join already emigrated family members.
But the year-end tragedy of the murder of 20 school children and six attending adults in a
Meanwhile, regardless of the 11th-hour efforts by the administration and
Read the latest political news.
- Obama Calls for Debt Ceiling Increase
- Don't Blame Me if Obama's Second Term Disappoints
- Debt Ceiling: Let's Pay Our Bills
- The Billionaires' Long Game
- GOP: Groping Old Party
- On to the Next Cliff
- Congress and the Fiscal Cliff: More of the Same
- The Dropped Ball
- Fiscal Cliff Deal Won't End War Between Democrats and Republicans
- Joe Biden Has the Last Laugh
- When Uncle Sam Pays Dividends
- Winning Ugly: Obama and the Fiscal Cliff
- Obama's 2013 priorities -- and Guns
- The Year That Was in Politics
- 2012: When Dreams Died
- Don't Tread on Six-Toed Cats
- The Crisis of the Middle Class and American Power
- What Price U.S. Citizenship?
- The Geopolitics of Immigration
- The Great New-Year Stampede
- Not So Merry Christmas For Congress and President
- John Boehner's 'Plan B' Gamble
- Republicans Would Rather Upgrade Afghan Infrastructure Than Our Own
- Who's Afraid of the Fiscal Cliff?
- The Kingdom of Fairness
- Never Ever, Ever, Ever...
- Obama Plays His High Cards
- Let The Real Fat Cats Pay Their Fair Share
- Tea Party Down But Not Out
- GOP Voter Suppression Continues
- How the GOP Can Blow Another Election
- The GOP -- Not a Club for Christians
- 'Amnesty' Not Looking So Bad to GOP
- Republicans: You Gotta Have Hope
- Federalism Could Be Solution to GOP Branding Problem
- Politicians: No Skin in the Game
- Goodbye, Senator Joe Lieberman
- Jim DeMint: A Senate loss or gain?
- A 'Right To' Words that Work
- Liberal Obsession with Race is Growing Old
- Some Companies Resorting to Extremes to Dodge Obamacare
- The Other Cliffs
- Take Care of the Children
- U.S. May Pay More Attention to Latin America in Obama's Second Term
- Snake-Oil Deficit Savings
- The Fiscal Hoax
- Fiscal Cliff 'Grand Bargain' May Be Anything But
- Dodging the Fiscal Swindle
- Brain-lock Inside the Beltway
The Year That Was in Politics | Politics
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