If you were listening to the media last Thursday you got an earful of Obama is doomed chatter, but by doing three things President Obama turned the tide and gave Romney a horrible week.
Here are the three things Obama did to ruin Romney’s week.
1). The Immigration Decision
The power of the presidency was on full display as the negative media talk about Obama quickly shifted when the president dominated the news by announcing a change in immigration policy that sent shock waves through the country. If the Romney campaign had any momentum, they were deflated, and left stumbling and stammering for an immigration answer. Mitt Romney has since compounded the damage by bombing his first Sunday morning network television interview on Face The Nation by repeatedly refusing to answer the immigration question, and four days later he still offered no answers while speaking at the NALEO Annual Conference.
2). The Outsourcer-In-Chief
The Romney camp was still reeling from the immigration decision when a Washington Post story, that they denied comment to, was published that used SEC filings to demonstrate that while he was the head of Bain Capital, Mitt Romney was not creating jobs, he was exporting them. The Romney campaign put out a statement that did not dispute any of the facts or research, just the use of the term outsourcing. David Axelrod and the Obama campaign quickly seized on the story and labeled Romney the outsourcer-in-chief, and for the second time in less than a week, the Romney campaign was caught with their pants down. They allowed Obama to define Romney as a job exporter. The more minutes pass without a strong reply, the more that label sticks.
3). Obama Puts the Final Nail into Romney’s Bad Week
When it was President Obama’s turn to speak at NALEO Annual Conference on Friday, he defined Romney’s immigration policy for him, “Your speaker from yesterday has a different view. In his speech, he said that when he makes a promise to you, he’ll keep it. Well, he has promised to veto the DREAM Act, and we should take him at his word. I’m just saying. And I believe that would be a tragic mistake. You do, too.” For good measure, Obama reminded everyone of the Romney college affordability plan which is for students to borrow the money for school from their parents, “In this country, we believe that if you want to take a risk on a new idea, you should have the chance to succeed. And you shouldn’t have to have wealthy parents in order to be successful.”
Notice what President Obama did over the last seven days. He created a bad week for Mitt Romney by taking action that changed the political discussion, defined his opponent when new information became available, and he ended the week by defining his opponent’s position on the issue which he put front and center for him. The Democrats lost presidential elections in 1988 and 2004 because they allowed their Republican opponents to define their image with voters. This time, the Democrat is solidly in control of the narrative.
By allowing his opponent to define him and his positions on the issues, Mitt Romney is going down the path to defeat. In all fairness, Romney has his work cut out for him. The Republican is facing a president that appears to understand the full power of his office. With one announcement President Obama was able to assert his control over this election, and reshape the national conversation. The fallout from Obama’s announcement set off an avalanche of Romney missteps that sent the Republican nominee into his current reeling state.
There is one dominant candidate in this election, and right now Barack Obama is exerting his will over Mitt Romney anytime he pleases. If Romney thinks this week was bad, he hasn’t seen anything yet.
Mr. Easley is the managing editor. He is also a White House Press Pool and a Congressional correspondent for PoliticusUSA. Jason has a Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science. His graduate work focused on public policy, with a specialization in social reform movements.
Awards and Professional Memberships
Member of the Society of Professional Journalists and The American Political Science Association