In a controversial Wall Street Journal opinion piece published Monday, Democratic pollsters Patrick H. Caddell and Douglas E. Schoen argue that President Obama should not run for re-election. To win, they argue, the unpopular Obama would have to go very negative against his GOP opponent, further dividing the country and making it impossible to lead for another four years. Instead, they say, the president should learn from Harry Truman and Lyndon Johnson, who "accepted the reality that they could not effectively govern the nation if they sought re-election," and opted not to seek another term. And that would make room for "the only leader capable of uniting the country around a bipartisan economic and foreign policy": Hillary Clinton. Obama's former rival and current Secretary of State has said repeatedly that she won't run. Should she reconsider?
This is so crazy it just might work: Just like Truman and Johnson, Obama is a Democrat involved in an unpopular war who prefers "passing the buck and blame" to Congress, says Andrew Malcolm at Investor's Business Daily. Clinton, on the other hand, has excelled heading the State Department. Should the Supreme Court toss out "ObamaCare" in 2012, a Clinton candidacy would free Democrats "of that unpopular, costly political liability." And despite her protestations, if Obama bowed out and Clinton's party seriously asked her to jump in, it's hard to believe that she wouldn't run — and win.
"The 'Dump Obama' movement has begun; Guess who'd replace him?"
But Hillary wouldn't win either: These days, Clinton gets to play the august Secretary of State, removed from the dirty politics of a campaign, says Bryan Preston at Pajamas Media. That's why she's polling so well. Most Americans "don't remember what a divisive force she was during her husband's terms," not to mention during her 2008 presidential bid. But a candidate Clinton "would quickly remind Americans that she is every bit as far to the left as Obama," except with "less charisma."
"Caddell and Schoen: Obama should drop pout and let Hillary run"
Plus, Obama is doing fine: Caddell and Schoen portray Obama's poll numbers as far more dismal than they actually are, says Andrew Sullivan at The Daily Beast. The country is suffering through the worst economic downturn since the 1930s. And yet, the president is "neck and neck with a generic Republican challenger." Other polls show Obama leading every single GOP candidate in the race. "A president with 9 percent unemployment leading most GOP rivals by 8 points or more is not a lame duck by any means."
"The Schoen-Caddell two-step"