The final Presidential debate this evening will likely create a poll-spike for whichever candidate “wins” the contest. In November, we will be presented with the final “winner” (barring a Florida debacle, as this one may be close too).
I don’t see either party “winning” in November. I’m hoping President Obama is reelected for reasons previously stated, but if he is, I won’t feel like we or I “won”. Why not? If experience is any guide, and recent experience is taken into account (Clinton second term) an Obama second term is sure to be rife with political discord and social ugliness. I’ll be the first to admit that I am as entrenched in my positions and beliefs as the committed Republican voter. I’ll also allow that I am willing to listen to reasoned and measured rhetoric from a centrist viewpoint. I’m willing to vote Republican if they proffered a middle-of-the-road candidate. Their party appears so fractured I don’t think I have to worry about that happening anytime soon…and therein lies my worry. The conversation has become so fractured…there is very little compromise, agreement, compassion or empathy on either side of the aisle.
I’d like to think the next four years under President Obama will bring the kind of success, change and hope he promised in 2008. I deeply believe he’d like to but I’m afraid what he will encounter instead is a widening fissure among the electorate and the elected representatives. Hang on for four years of political in-fighting and worse. With the influx of Neanderthal idiots such as Rep. Todd Akin, the landscape isn’t about to do a sudden moral about-face. We are in for some tough times…politically and socially.
Don’t believe me? Check out some of the hate speech and nasty rhetoric on the Right. If their boy Romney isn’t elected, this (okay, I’m going to break a cardinal rule here and generalize) widely uneducated group of neocons will erupt in a media-frenzied cacophony of hate speech and half-truths…and many outright lies that will not be challenged by the (and I really despise this phrase) “mainstream media”.
We saw just a hint of it under Clinton when they latched onto Monicagate and rode that into impeachment proceedings…never mind his sexual pathos had NOTHING to do with his generalship of our nation. Think that was ugly? What’s likely to transpire next will make that seem like child’s play.
I believe we are on the cusp of this cultural war because I will feel just as passionate (but hopefully not as immature or reactive) if Romney is given the keys to the kingdom. I believe that Presidency would ignite the sometimes long forgotten flame of liberalism that is generally relegated to the privacy of the voting booth. I know I will take appropriate and legal action to make sure he remained a one-term President.
I wish it wasn’t like this. I wish whoever is elected could garner a consensus of the populace and govern in a bipartisan manner. Those days are over. We find that we come together as a nation in times of national tragedy, as in 9/11, but we also saw how short-lived that political capital is if it’s used spuriously. Let’s hope it doesn’t take that kind of event to draw us together, but I sure don’t have a lot of optimism that this chasm will be bridged any time soon…