Afghanistan could decide this presidency

Despite the false hopes of Republicans, Obama will prevail on health care and preside over a growing economy. The fateful test is Afghanistan.

Robert Shrum

The nihilistic Republicans who have rooted for Obama and America to fail at everything from the Olympics to growth and jobs will face a rising headwind next year. Health-care reform will have passed and the economy will be on the mend. Even if Republicans gain seats in 2010, they will be buried by a landslide Obama victory in 2012.

How do I know this? Put aside the ceaseless distractions of a 24-hour news cycle that traffics in instant verdicts; what matters is not this month’s unemployment rate but next summer’s. And if you look beyond the sound bites to the bigger trends, events are moving us toward a new, progressive Obama era.

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