Saturday, July 21, 2012

Race for the White House

There is not much time to write today about the week's events in Presidential politics, but perhaps that is appropriate because the campaign came to a bit of a halt yesterday after a national tragedy.

During a midnight premiere of the new Batman movie (which had already received some dubious media attention in regards to whether or not the villain was based on Mitt Romney....which was not at all true, and personally I would think that Romney has a lot more in common with Bruce Wayne but anyways..) a gunman opened fire in Colorado and before surrendering to the police conducted the worst mass shooting in American history. Tragically, 12 people were killed, but considering how many had been shot in total, we perhaps should feel somewhat fortunate the death count was not higher.

The news of this event has dominated the media this week and both campaigns have pulled their negative ads out of the battleground state of Colorado in light of the news. Yesterday, both Barack Obama and Mitt Romney scrapped campaign appearances to instead make statements focusing solely on the events and the need for healing. Both men emphasized their status as fathers and called for Americans to rally together in a time of tragedy.

Of course, when events like this happen, people on both sides of the spectrum often try to insert politics into it, and there was a bit of that Friday morning as ABC News took to the airwaves to report that somebody with the same name, which is not an uncommon name, in Colorado was a member of the Tea Party. Gee, do you think that was maybe worth digging into further to see if it was even the same person? A conservative website reported that the shooter was a registered Democrat, but that also appears to be inaccurate. As is typically the case with these psychopaths, politics likely played no role at all. This case might be about a disturbed individual who came to believe he was "The Joker" and who wreaked havoc on innocent people. Let's continue to hope and pray for those who have suffered and that justice is served.

In the days ahead, the campaign will go on of course, but it is going to be taking a backseat to the London Olympic Games which will be beginning at the end of this coming week. I believe First Lady Michelle Obama and perhaps Joe Biden will be attending the Opening Ceremonies, as will presumptive Republican nominee Mitt Romney, who has the Olympics as a big part of his bio. Romney should get more coverage by attending the games than anything who could do at home this upcoming week. In addition to visiting with our staunch ally Great Britain, Romney will also take advantage of the news lull by making visits to Poland and Israel during the upcoming week. The fact that Romney did not unveil his running mate this past week indicates that the announcement will likely not come until after the Olympics. Speculation on that front seems to now indicate that the three Veepstake medalists might be Rob Portman, Tim Pawlenty, and Bobby Jindal.

The overall race, which remains very close nationally and in the key states is unlikely to change much at all for the next three weeks. We will get a better stance of momentum and whatnot after the Olympics and when both national conventions kick off in back to back weeks.

While politics may be taking a backseat for a while, we will eventually come to hear a lot more about something that was said earlier this past week by Barack Obama,and which may be a key moment in the campaign:

"If you’ve got a business — you didn’t build that.  Somebody else made that happen."