Americans Assess Meaning of Obama's Re-election

President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks at the election night party at McCormick Place in Chicago, early Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012.President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks at the election night party at McCormick Place in Chicago, early Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012.
x
President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks at the election night party at McCormick Place in Chicago, early Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012.
President Barack Obama pauses as he speaks at the election night party at McCormick Place in Chicago, early Wednesday, Nov. 7, 2012.
Kent Klein
Political analysts and experts in Washington are evaluating how President Barack Obama’s re-election might affect America’s future. Both Democrats and Republicans are looking at why and how Obama won and Mitt Romney lost, and also how they can move forward.

“For the United States of America, the best is yet to come!” said the president to cheers and applause.

The morning after Obama’s victory speech, many Americans are debating how to push his vision forward.  

At the Brookings Institution, experts at a morning-after forum discussed the overall meaning of Obama’s election win, and particularly what it could mean for the Republican Party. Senior fellow Thomas Mann said the election outcome shows that Republican lawmakers’ strategy of routinely opposing the president’s policies failed in forcing Obama out of office. He said Republicans on Capitol Hill gambled and lost.

“They played an all-out opposition party. ‘We are [against] everything. We will stop it where we can. We will delay it otherwise, and if it manages to pass, we will discredit it.’” said Mann.

Mann believes some Republican lawmakers are discussing an alternate strategy in which they negotiate with the president, if Obama wants to cooperate.

“At least a dozen Republicans, I think, will be unwilling to be whipped by [Senate Minority Leader] Mitch McConnell into a filibuster opposition strategy to the president. And it seems to me there will be openings for the president as a consequence,” said Mann.

Brookings guest scholar Jonathan Rauch said he also sees a too-conservative approach as one reason for Republican nominee Mitt Romney’s defeat.

“I think Romney was done in by the fact that he could not get far enough to the center credibly enough. He had to go too far right in the primaries. And the reason for that is you have some fierce constituencies in the Republican Party that do not want the party to change,” said Rauch.

Rauch said that as he did in 2008, Obama won by appealing to a coalition of Hispanics and other ethnic minorities, young voters and women.  He said Republicans did little to solicit votes from those growing segments of the U.S. population.

“You saw Hispanics increase their share, and you saw women really come out for Obama.  The social issues did not help the Republicans there. I think it is now going to be clear to a lot of intelligent Republicans - like [Senator] Lindsey Graham, who has already said this - that 2012 has to be the last year when Republicans run as the party of angry white men. That is just not enough votes any more,” said Rauch.

Meanwhile, the U.S. business community, which often clashes with Obama, is setting its course for the next four years in response to the priorities the president laid out in his victory speech.

“Reducing our deficit, reforming our tax code, fixing our immigration system, freeing ourselves from foreign oil. We have got more work to do," said Obama.

In a written statement congratulating Obama, the Business Roundtable urged him to focus on deficit reduction and tax reform, and to ease regulatory controls for businesses.
This forum has been closed.
Comment Sorting
Comments
     
by: estela from: buenos aires argentina
November 08, 2012 2:49 PM
I would like to listen to some important news, but I can not find
the key to listen it.

by: Haron from: Afghanistan
November 08, 2012 5:07 AM
I congratulate his won. I hope he could defeat the terrorists inside the Pakistan in one or two years if possible. otherwise if he prefer to pull-out his troops from Afghanistan and spend his budgets on their job opportunities and infrastructures' rehabilitation. I think it is a big anguish for those who are dis-missile by the name of DDR. where, all three sides of Afghanistan are equipped of weapons for 2014 and North of Afghanistan faced with more enemies more than 1990-2001 with empty hands by monkey BUSH.

by: aziz from: uganda
November 08, 2012 4:05 AM
mitt and his party deserved a defeat because republicans like wars

Featured Videos

Your JavaScript is turned off or you have an old version of Adobe's Flash Player. Get the latest Flash player.
Expelled from Pakistan, Afghan Refugees Return to Increased Hardshipi
X
Ayesha Tanzeem
May 28, 2015 6:48 PM
Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Expelled from Pakistan, Afghan Refugees Return to Increased Hardship

Undocumented refugees returning to Afghanistan from Pakistan have no jobs, no support system, and no home return to, and international aid agencies say they and the government are overwhelmed and under-resourced. Ayesha Tanzeem has more from Kabul.
Video

Video Britain Makes Controversial Move to Crack Down on Extremism

Britain is moving to tighten controls on extremist rhetoric, even when it does not incite violence or hatred -- a move that some are concerned might unduly restrict basic freedoms. It is an issue many countries are grappling with as extremist groups gain power in the Middle East, fueled in part by donations and fighters from the West. VOA’s Al Pessin reports from London.
Video

Video Floodwaters Recede in Houston, but Rain Continues

Many parts of Texas are recovering from one of the worst natural disasters to hit the southwestern state. Heavy rains on Monday and early Tuesday caused rivers to swell in eastern and central Texas, washing away homes and killing at least 13 people. As VOA’s Greg Flakus reports from Houston, floodwaters are receding slowly in the country's fourth-largest city, and there likely is to be more rain in the coming days.
Video

Video 3D Printer Makes Replica of Iconic Sports Car

Cars with parts made by 3D printers are already on the road, but engineers are still learning about this new technology. While testing the possibility of printing an entire car, researchers at the U.S. Department of Energy recently created an electric-powered replica of an iconic sports roadster. VOA’s George Putic has more.
Video

Video Al-Shabab Recruitment Drive Still on In Kenya

The al-Shabab militants that have long battled for control of Somalia also have recruited thousands of young people in Kenya, leaving many families disconsolate. Mohammed Yusuf recently visited the Kenyan town of Isiolo, and met with relatives of those recruited, as well as a many who have helped with the recruiting.
Video

Video US Voters Seek Answers From Presidential Candidates on IS Gains

The growth of the Islamic State militant group in Iraq and Syria comes as the 2016 U.S. presidential campaign kicks off in the Midwest state of Iowa.   As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, voters want to know how the candidates would handle recent militant gains in the Middle East.
Video

Video A Small Oasis on Kabul's Outskirts Provides Relief From Security Tensions

When people in Kabul want to get away from the city and relax, many choose Qargha Lake, a small resort on the outskirts of Kabul. Ayesha Tanzeem visited and talked with people about the precious oasis.
Video

Video Film Festival Looks at Indigenous Peoples, Culture Conflict

A recent Los Angeles film festival highlighted the plight of people caught between two cultures. Mike O'Sullivan has more on the the Garifuna International Film Festival, a Los Angeles forum created by a woman from Central America who wants the world to know more about her culture.
Video

Video Kenyans Lament Losing Sons to al-Shabab

There is agony, fear and lost hope in the Kenyan town of Isiolo, a key target of a new al-Shabab recruitment drive. VOA's Mohammed Yusuf visits Isiolo to speak with families and at least one man who says he was a recruiter.
Video

Video Scientists Say Plankton More Important Than Previously Thought

Tiny ocean creatures called plankton are mostly thought of as food for whales and other large marine animals, but a four-year global study discovered, among other things, that plankton are a major source of oxygen on our planet. VOA’s George Putic reports.
Video

Video Kenya’s Capital Sees Rise in Shisha Parlors

In Kenya, the smoking of shisha, a type of flavored tobacco, is the latest craze. Patrons are flocking to shisha parlors to smoke and socialize. But the practice can be addictive and harmful, though many dabblers may not realize the dangers, according to a new review. Lenny Ruvaga has more on the story for VOA from Nairobi, Kenya.
Video

Video Iowa Family's Sacrifice Shaped US Military Service for Generations

Few places in America have experienced war like Waterloo. This small town in the Midwest state of Iowa became famous during World War II not for what it accomplished, but what it lost. As VOA’s Kane Farabaugh reports, the legacy of one family’s sacrifice is still a reminder today of the real cost of war for all families on the homefront.

VOA Blogs