President Obama’s recent decision to force the Catholic Church to violate their religious beliefs and provide contraceptives and morning after pills in their health care packages surprised me. No, I was not surprised to see this as a logical progression of Obamacare – I was more surprised by the timing. I am among those who believe that Obama will get re-elected in 2012 no matter what happens in the next few months – that will be a separate post in it itself. Without going too much in depth into what I plan to write a big part of my theory comes down to two observations: What is Barack Obama’s greatest love and passion in his life? Barack Obama. And what is his greatest talent, the one thing that sets him above the rest? Convincing other people that they should love Barack Obama almost as much as he does. In other words, he has the perfect skill set for getting elected to public office, regardless of experience or his record. Given how Catholics came out in support of Obama in 2008, why would he spit in the church’s eye right now and risk alienating this voter base with just a few months to election?
It makes absolutely no sense, unless you look at the bigger picture. Obama’s re-election campaign unofficially kicked off with the Occupy Wall Street movement. It got the unionistas and professional leftists out to energize his "young and stupid" demographic that had lost a lot of its enthusiasm for Obama, and also to help set his 2012 campaign theme of envy and resentment toward your neighbor. Does that sound like an over the top statement? The president can’t run on his record – sustained high unemployment, soaring deficits, high fuel prices thanks to an anti-energy policy, not to mention a foreign policy where the good guys don’t trust us and the bad guys think we’re a joke. How many leaders have you seen who after three years in their position continue to whine about the job they inherited? Hence, the "Obama in 2012 – It’s someone else’s fault" campaign theme.
The president is very good at getting himself elected to office – whether getting opponents thrown off the ballot, sealed divorce records released, accepting illegal campaign contributions from foreign donors, or having a fawning press ignore his every flaw while shining a glaring light on every weakness of his opponents, no matter how small or petty. When Mitt Romney shaped up as the most obvious opponent for him to face in November, the OWS campaign makes perfect sense to start building resentment and envy toward Americans who are actually competent enough to lead successful careers. But then a funny thing happened.
As the Not-Romneys fell by the wayside one by one, somebody that nobody saw as a viable threat was still standing and going strong. No, I’m not talking about Gingrich. I’m talking about the recent rise of Rick Santorum. Aside from running against Ron Paul (which will never happen), no remaining candidate is as desirable an opponent for Obama as Rick Santorum. He is by far the most social conservative among the candidates, and he has made enough statements regarding women and gays that he would make the perfect target to whip up enthusiasm in a very unenthusiastic left wing base, not to mention the 24/7 news cycle will allow the Palace Guards in the press to ignore real issues and President Obama’s performance while painting Santorum as enough of an extremist to turn off any moderates.
As for abandoning the Catholic vote, Obama has already issued his faux-compromise. My guess is that he’s got enough tricks up his sleeve to throw out between now and November to convince Catholics that he doesn’t really believe that the right to free contraceptives trumps religious freedom. On one of the Sunday new shows George Will chided the Catholic bishops for getting behind Obamacare without thinking through where it would logically progress. I would argue the same about the American people making the decision to elect Obama in 2008. For that matter, I sincerely hope that you are not among the economically illiterate who were led to believe the claims of, "If you like your insurance you can keep it" or that "your premiums will not go up."
Back to the Catholic Church insurance decision – why now? Obama could have easily waited until after the November elections to show his views on religious liberty in this country. If you’re reading this you already know about Santorum’s surge in the polls and recent victories in the primaries. The timing of this announcement was perfect to push religious conservatives toward not the Mormon, but the outspoken Christian in the bunch who is suddenly riding a wave of momentum. We’ve seen how quickly political fortunes come and go, and with enough momentum Santorum could ride this wave to the nomination, helping Obama not only get re-elected, but fire up enough turnout from his base to take back the losses from the 2010 elections.
Any of my regular readers (thank you, both of you!) probably notice something missing from this post. I’m big on citing my sources and embedding links to support my assertions – there aren’t any here. Yes, I could put links backing my statements about the economy and foreign policy, etc, but that wasn’t the purpose of this post. The rest of what I’ve written here are nothing more than my own observations, personal analysis, and theories taking them to a logical conclusion. I won’t insult your intelligence by suggesting that this is anything more than a conspiracy theory. I just see something happening that makes no sense and am looking for an explanation. If anyone has a better theory, please comment!
Cross posted at Brother Bob’s Blog