Skip to comments.Cheese it! - Obama avoids Wisconsin [where union membership has dropped like a rock]
Posted on 06/03/2012 1:32:26 AM PDT by Cincinatus' Wife
>>>>The Wisconsin branch of the American Federation of Teachers has lost some 6,000 of its 17,000 members. And membership in the states chapter of AFSCME has plummeted from nearly 63,000 to just 29,000 in just one year.
Its not hard to understand why labor sees these reforms as such a threat and why they see the recall as so important. And yet Obama, if hes wearing comfortable shoes, is doing so everywhere other than Wisconsin.<<<<<
Barack Obama seems determined to avoid Wisconsin.
On Friday, he visited Minneapolis, Minnesota, for a midday speech and three fundraisers. He departed late afternoon for Chicago and three more fundraisers that evening. The president stayed overnight in his hometown and spent Saturday morning at his old home before flying back to Washington, D.C., for a brief stop before heading to Camp David for some downtime.
So just four days before the recall elections in Wisconsin that the states Democrats have worked 16 months to win, with potential implications for November 2012, the leader of their party did six fundraisers for himself in surrounding states but couldnt find time for even a quick stop? Think about it: As Wisconsin Democrats were busy getting voters to cast early ballots Friday and organizing for Tuesday, Air Force One flew overhead twicefrom Washington to Minnesota and Minnesota to Chicago.
Im no political strategist, but I dont get it.
Conventional wisdom is that Obama is avoiding a trip to Wisconsin because internal Democratic polling, like several recent public polls, shows Governor Scott Walker with an insurmountable lead over Milwaukee mayor Tom Barrett. Obama, this thinking goes, risks looking impotent if he makes an appearance for a losing candidate. I suppose thats correct, and there are certainly downsides to a visit.
But I wonder if the downsides to skipping the state and skipping it in the way that he did are not worse. And theres always the outside chance that Barrett pulls off a surprise victory in which case Obama would have been celebrated as a difference-maker.
Its clear that Wisconsin Democrats wanted him to come. In an interview with the Huffington Post on Thursday Barrett responded to Obamas visit across the states border and invited the president to Wisconsin. Wed love to have him zip over to western Wisconsin, Barrett said. Im happy to meet him for a fish fry.
No luck. Rather than travel the thirty miles from the Twin Cities for the perch special at the Mallalieu Inn over in Hudson, Wisconsin (or, even better, a burger at Dicks), Obama went straight to Illinois, where he held a fundraiser at the Chicago Cultural Center in an ornate, high-ceilinged room where guests in business attire mingled and sipped wine, according to the pool report. Tickets started at $2,500.
Wisconsin Democrats cannot be happy with the snub. They were furious at what they perceived as inadequate support from national Democrats, leaking their frustrations in what looked like an attempt to shame the Democratic National Committee into providing the backing they were seeking.
A few days after that piece ran, the Wall Street Journal reported that national Democrats had advised their Wisconsin counterparts against pursuing a recall in the first place.
Top Democrats now say that when labor groups first raised the specter of a recall, the party's officials urged their allies in Wisconsin to reconsider. "We told them it was a bad, bad, bad idea," one Democratic official said.
A union official said both the Democratic National Committee and the Obama campaign expressed reservations. "I don't know that anyone was enthusiastic about it over there," the union official said.
The bitterness that has led to such finger-pointing will be much worse if Barrett loses on Tuesday. That cannot be good for Obama. Two groups important to his reelection will feel abandoned by their president: labor and Wisconsin Democrats.
Start with labor. Throughout his presidential campaign, Obama promised that he would be a friend to labor in the White House, a national spokesman of sorts for Americas workers.
And understand this: If American workers are being denied their right to organize and collectively bargain when Im in the White House, Ill put on a comfortable pair of shoes myself, he said while campaigning in 2007. Ill walk on that picket line with you as president of the United States of America. Because workers deserve to know that somebodys standing in their corner.
In their corner? The Wall Street Journal reported this week that public employee unions have seen dramatic drops in membership since Walkers reforms made union membership voluntary.
The Wisconsin branch of the American Federation of Teachers has lost some 6,000 of its 17,000 members. And membership in the states chapter of AFSCME has plummeted from nearly 63,000 to just 29,000 in just one year.
Its not hard to understand why labor sees these reforms as such a threat and why they see the recall as so important. And yet Obama, if hes wearing comfortable shoes, is doing so everywhere other than Wisconsin.
Yes, its true that Obama for America volunteers have been organizing in Wisconsin. And, yes, Obama endorsed Barrett from Washington.
But how meaningless was that long-distance endorsement? When a reporter asked Jay Carney about it last week, the presidents spokesman said he did not know that his boss had formally backed Barrett.
Beyond that, Obama doesnt want Wisconsin Democrats dispirited perhaps even resentful heading into November. His electoral strategy depends on a win in the state. We know this because his campaign has told us.
In December, Obamas campaign manager Jim Messina laid out the presidents five best paths to 270 electoral votes the West path, the Midwest path, the South path, the Florida path, and the Expansion path. Whats notable about them in this context: Each one assumes a win in Wisconsin.
Thats no longer a safe assumption, especially if Walker prevails on Tuesday. Its true that Obama won Wisconsin by a huge margin in 2008 56-42. And hes leading most polling now with a RealClearPolitics average of 4.7 percent. But Republicans dominate the state legislature and hold the governorship. And the results of the 2000 and 2004 presidential elections suggest the state could well be in play again. In 2004, John Kerry defeated George W. Bush by a margin of just 12,000 votes out of nearly 3 million. In 2000, Al Gore beat Bush by just 5,500 votes out of 2.5 million.
An Obama visit to Wisconsin, even if it preceded a loss, would have energized the activists who have been working in the state for more than a year many of whom Obama will need to work for him over the next five months. And it would have given rank-and-file Democratic voters the sense that their president stood with them on a campaign of such obvious importance to them.
Maybe these folks will quickly move beyond the recall if Barrett loses. After all, five months is a long time to let those wounds heal.
But maybe not. Its a big chance to take.
Of course, theres another reason Obama might want to avoid Wisconsinone that would not likely occur to Democrats in the state or their union brothers. Perhaps the White House understands that the reforms are working and recognizes that theyre increasingly popular among Wisconsin voters. And that, it seems to me, would be the most devastating indictment of the recall yet.
My humble guess is that most of the people we saw on TV several months in demonstrations there in Wis....are the hardcore folks. The rest....are like these people who quit the union. It would be interesting to know....as Walker wins...how many ex-union folks voted for him.
To: Cincinatus’ Wife
My humble guess is that most of the people we saw on TV several months in demonstrations there in Wis....are the hardcore folks.......
I would agree but consider that MANY of those demonstrators came from out of state.
I have sent my ballot in and now await the outcome, praying that Walker wins and wins BIG.
So these are the hard cores?
Hardcore folks that were shipped in from other states, that is.
The sad truth is that Obama has nothing to lose. He can snub the Dems in Wisconsin and he can snub the unions but, in the end, they will rally around him and pull out all the stops to re-elect him. His base consists of the “hard core” and they are well aware that, in the end, Obama is the candidate who will twist every right and every advantage at a national level to be certain that the independent contractor and individual worker (as well as the average taxpayer) gets the screws put to him so that the unions can suck up every last dollar Obama can send their way.
So these are the hard cores?
Yep ... every one ... hard working ... under paid ... under appreciated ... English teachers ... who work long hours for nine months each year (less six weeks off for holidays and breaks) ... who are obviously highly qualified ... who could increase their salaries at least five or six times in the private sector ... but they don't because they are willing to sacrifice for a small pittance ... which the Nazi governor wants to take away!
He didn’t have to go. The “first black president”, William Jefferson Criminal, had recently visited the state. Why would they need to see the half-frikken American?
Look at it this way...reverse the thought process...IF Obama thought Barrett had a ghost of a chance, he would fall all over himself getting there., so he could take the credit, bask in the glory.
That he avoids it, proves he knows Barrett is toast.
Thank the good Lord and the people of WI.
They absolutely are - provided that you are speaking of those armed union members in uniform standing there...
The pathetic part of that picture is the glaring mistake in 3rd grade English on that sign...
I HOPE that they are not teachers, but that is probably a forlorn hope...
She must be from the teachers union.
The pathetic part of that picture is the glaring mistake in 3rd grade English on that sign...
I HOPE that they are not teachers, but that is probably a forlorn hope...”
My son brought a note home from his teacher, “Robert would of done better if he would of studied harder.” The principal called me and said that my reply to the teacher made her cry.
There's the problem right there: it didn't meet the FLOTUS "healthy eating"
Wisconsin: Should we feel snubbed by 0bama? ping.
I can’t tell about the core, but the exterior seems a little soft.
Obama went to Jersey
Obama went. To Taxachusettes
Obama went to Virginia
Three states, three losses.
Obama, please visit Wisconsin tomorrow...pleeeeeeeease.
Please share your reply.
See # 21.
The 1-term Marxist is avoiding another shellacking.
Obama’s hides, throws Barrett under the bus, sends Bill Clinton, who can’t muster up, even a crowd of 1000 nutcases in Milwaukee last Friday. Obama is the kiss of death for any Democrat politician. Just watch and see how many Democrats will want Obama to campaign with them. Answer, none!!! It’s late, folks, but the Democrat Party needs to broom Obama right now, get rid of him. Force him to resign, like right now!!! They will not do it!!! So.......Obama will take a good portion of the Democrat Party down to defeat with him in November, 2012!!! On this very site, I have, over and over and over, urged Democrats to rid the party of Obama and his ilk. Just got laughs as a response. Who is laughing now Democrats??? GO SCOTT WALKER, ON TO VICTORY!!!
No wonder the DNC and the Obama administration is nowhere to be seen...
Walker has already won the battle....he is just moping up....
This shows the absolutely vile hatred of Walker by union leadership...and the mindless waste of money... when even their own union goons are deflecting
What was your reply and did you send the note back redlined?
The most recent thing I saw that jarred me was “mam” as in “Yes Mam, I will do that at 2pm.”
My assistant now knows better, although I did not make her cry. :-)
“Please share your reply.”
This happened about 40 years ago. I wrote “My son would HAVE done better if you would Have taught better English.”
Love the feet. Yes, the over-suckled pigs of organized labor’s “political wing” who base their entire existence on one thing, money laundering via conscripted dues.
This should be unconstitutional....Taxpayer dollars to political opponents.
Go Scott Walker, Win and win big. I still say that the icing on the cake would be less votes for Barrett than signatures on the recall petitions.
They sure our!