Losing is a stigma that few can bear well. It was the year 1980 when Jimmy Carter ran for re-election, and his image ended up deeply damaged in his country after loosing to Ronald Reagan. Some say the Operation Eagle Claw had something to do with it, others include the energy crisis.
But yesterday, no matter how many difficulties there were, no matter how critical the economic situation is, and no matter what secret weapon Donald Trump had up in his sleeve, Obama won the elections.
I think he won fair and square, and the reason is three-folded, being basically the anti-Bush.
He implicitly convinced the electorate that voting for Mitt Romney would have been like voting for a third coming of George W. Bush; he cleverly brought up the fears that the Republican Party arouses in single women, Hispanics’ and young immigrants; and finally, thanks to his role in the wake of Hurricane Sandy’s emergency, he was able to stop his opponent’s impetus and regain the position of the Hero.
And if the above wasn’t enough: Obama had such bad economy records on his shoulder, poverty rates and unemployment increased from 13% to 15%, on one hand his administration created many job opportunities on the other it failed to maintain them, millions are still jobless. So it’s hard to imagine how he achieved 303 seats.
But in spite of all these cons, people have still chosen him and decided not blamed him for this but the international crisis instead. Also, it seems to me that the electorate places the responsibility on George W. Bush, and that electing Mitt Romney would be very much like having Bush’s third coming, and possibly with further deterioration.
This is why Obama’s team decided to concentrate his efforts in the key-states and key-population (to me Ohio shall remain a mystery…). While Romney was busy organizing his expensive campaign, Obama built a strategy which aimed to make Romney look like an rich elitist Republican, and second he targeted Hispanics, Asian Americans and unmarried women using all the weapons he had (Obamacare rings a bell).
We will never know how Hurricane Sandy truly affected the results, but we do know that was Sandy who forced Obama to put his campaign on hold and helped magnifying his Chief-in-command image. After Sandy, Obama became a hero and polls demonstrated how much his people appreciate him.