The question that could determine the 2012 election
It is always the most important question for any president during a re-election bid, “Are you better off than you were 4 years ago?” It worked for Ronald Reagan, and Bill Clinton. George W. Bush won by convincing people they were safer than they were four years before. Jimmy Carter and George H.W. Bush were unable to convince the American people that their policies were successful. They were one term presidents.
Now Barack Obama is confronted with that question. Both democrats and republicans seem willing to gamble that the answer for each individual voter will help them win this fall.
It was a key point in yesterday’s kickoff rally in Richmond. Here is my report for NBC12:
RICHMOND, VA (WWBT) – The battle for Virginia has officially begun. President Barack Obama kicked off his re-election campaign in Richmond. It is a state, and town, the president needs to win.
The rally atmosphere was electric, exactly the start that the Obama campaign wanted, but after all the crowds have left and all the music has stopped, each individual voter is going to have ask themselves the same question. And the answer may determine who they vote for in November.
That question came about mid-way through the president’s speech to a raucous VCU crowd.
“How well is the typical family doing?” asked Obama.
The typical family and their view of the world, could determine the election.
Four years ago then Senator Barack Obama made a pledge to turn things around. He now returns asking for a chance to keep the progress going.
“It is going to take sustained consistent effort, yours and mine,” he said. “For America to fully recover, for us to be where we need to be.”
But republicans, like Romney supporter Pete Snyder are happy to have people judge where they were 4 years ago, and determine if things are better.
“Gas prices are up over $2 since 2008, we are all feeling that pain and higher education costs are up 25%,’ he said. “That’s not hope and change. That’s doom and gloom.”
According to NBC news political director Chuck Todd, the place where both sides need to win that argument, more any other place in America, is right here in Richmond, Virginia.
“When you look at this area from the Richmond suburbs, City of Richmond, the larger media market in general, it is 50-50 as you can get,” he said.
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