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Barack Obama retirement watch

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By John Barnhart

    I voted yesterday, as I hope you did.

    Actually, I wrote the above statement considering the fact that our paper comes out the day after election day. In reality, with deadlines in mind, I’m writing this before I’ve actually had a chance to go to my polling place and cast my ballot for Bob McDonnell, Bill Bolling and Ken Cuccinelli. I’m assuming that I don’t get run over by a big truck, shot by an irate “Democrat,” fall off a ladder or croak from natural causes before I get there.

    I hope these three Republicans win. President Barack Obama and the pirate crew running Congress are a constant reminder that, when “Democrats” win, ordinary people lose.

    And, speaking of President Obama, I’m really looking forward to his retirement. As I noted back at the end of September, when I first wrote a column with this title, it’s far too soon to bid him farewell, but I’m still entertaining the hope that voters will turn him into a one-term president in 2012.

    One sign that this could happen is that he seems to be acting more like a prime minister rather than the President of the United States. In spite of his speech to Congress two months ago, President Obama still seems to be acting as salesman-in-chief for whatever the pseudo-Communist wolves, who dominate the “Democratic” Party’s Congressional leadership, come up with.

    This may also explain why he has dithered for more than two months on making a decision on General Stanley McChrystal’s request for a troop surge in Afghanistan. McChrystal was the general specifically chosen back in May to implement President Obama’s new strategy in Afghanistan. Now, the man on the scene says he needs 40,000 additional troops to do this, and liberal Democrats are fussing. Prime Minister Obama may be reluctant to buck his party’s Congressional leadership, which liberals dominate, on this issue.

    If he wants to rescue his presidency, it would be good for him to remember that he is not Prime Minister Obama, he is President Obama. It would be good for him to remember that Barack Obama, not Nancy Pelosi, was elected President of the United States last year. He should also remember that Americans like him a lot better than Pelosi. While his approval rating has fallen precipitously in the past 10 months, it is still vastly better than Pelosi’s. Pelosi, who is wildly unpopular in most of the country, has an approval rating that makes George W. Bush’s look good.

    One thing that President Obama needs do is to make a presidential decision to take his military commander’s recommendation and provide the troops necessary to implement his policy. He can get Congress to support this with a bipartisan coalition of Republicans and moderate Democrats. Republicans will support him on this, and so will a large portion of Democrats.

    I suspect he probably agrees with the pseudo-Communist wolves on the shape of health care reform. Nevertheless, he should have taken a more assertive role in shaping health care legislation from the beginning. As it has turned out, he ceded too much authority to Congressional leaders and it may be difficult for him to get it back without a fight.

    He needs to get it back, and he needs to get it back soon. If he continues to act like a prime minister, then Pelosi & Company will force him to govern from the left and prevent him from moving to the center. He needs to do this because the United States is a center-right country. Governing from the left guarantees public opposition to his policies, opposition that Republicans could exploit to their advantage. That, and the right Republican candidate in 2012 could send the Obama family back to Chicago in January, 2013.