Monday, August 4, 2008

This can't be good for the Blue Team!

While the latest Gallup poll shows Sen. Barack Obama with a three point lead over John McCain (46 percent to 43 percent), the race for the White House remains - as it has been for several days - a statistical dead heat for all practical purposes. And if Monday's Rasmussen Report is to be believed, the race is actually tied at 44 percent a piece (with John McCain slightly ahead if so-called "leaners" are counted.)

Rasmussen goes on to point out:

McCain is currently viewed favorably by 55% of the nation’s voters, Obama by 51%. That is the lowest rating for Obama since he wrapped up the nomination. Obama is viewed favorably by 83% of Democrats, 22% of Republicans, and 47% of unaffiliated voters. For McCain, the numbers are 87% favorable among Republicans, 26% among Democrats, and 61% among unaffiliated voters.
So what gives? Why is Barack Obama - as George Will inimitably described it - "dramatically underperforming?" This is especially curious given the Republican Party's season of doldrums, unparalleled Democratic fundraising and the apparent enthusiasm on the part of Americans for that ambiguity of ambiguities, change. Will and others have their assorted theories, but the common thread appears to be a recognition amongst the electorate of the staggering gulf between Obama's titanic ambition and scant accomplishment.

To be sure, there is nothing in Obama's public record to suggest that he would be able to force the levers of government in order to bring about the change that he so incessantly trumpets. As much as his supporters hope that he will bring about all good things merely by way of rhetorical flourish, for his part, Obama hopes like hell that likely voters will not trouble themselves with looking beyond carefully crafted images of buoyant adulators cheering on their conquering king.

Besides having a limited knowledge of how government actually works, Barack Obama's lack of political tenure leaves him bereft of a certain stamina of character. Simply put, Barack does not wear well; his political hide has not been seasoned for the rigors of a long campaign.
(Sen. Hillary Clinton may have swerved into a truth when she spoke of not wanting a "one-night stand" with Iowa voters, as it appears that Obama wishes that the whole thing were just about one night or one photo-op.) The more we are exposed to him, the less we like him and the more inconvenient questions we have about him.

That phenomenon may explain another result from Rasmussen polling. According to a survey of approximately 15,000 adults conducted in July, the number of Americans who consider themselves Democrats fell by two percentage points to 39.2 percent, the lowest level since January (compared with 31.6 percent who considered themselves Republicans.) Whether this is a reflection who's at the top of the Democratic ticket or more directly reflects the abysmal approval rating of the Democrat-controlled Congress is not entirely clear.

What is evident is that the Left seems prepared to spend something north of $500 million to elect a candidate who represents the political equivalent of a Ferrari Testarossa. Barack Obama is sleek, rhetorically curvaceous, and polished to a high shine (courtesy of the MSM's detail shop.) What is also evident is that Americans are beginning to observe that the job of moving America forward is better accomplished with a sturdy pick-up truck than a sports car.

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