Ted Kennedy’s Case Against Carter in 1980 Can Easily Be Made Against Obama in 2012

Bookmark and Share    The last incumbent President to have received a real challenge for renomination was Jimmy Carter.  In 1980, he had to slug it out against Ted Kennedy.  
In the end, Carter won his nomination easily, but the fact that the environment was so ripe for a possible primary challenge to Jimmy Carter said a lot.  Just the the name of the person who was willing to do so, Ted Kennedy……said even more than that.  As political icons and liberal stalwarts, there is not a Democrat in the world who wouldn’t  do anything for the Kennedy stamp of approval, but to be directly opposed by one is indeed unsettling.
Still though,  since  Carter was such a dismal failure, facing a contested nomination contest was not shocking.  And perhaps if another Democrat took up the challenge, Carter may have very well lost renomination.  But sadly, Ted Kennedy carried too much baggage with incidents such as Chappaquiddick in his closet.  Ted Kennedy was also not the kind of electrifying and masterful campaigner that his two most famous brothers were.  As a result, Teddy practically sealed his electoral fate when during a nationally televised interview,  [see video below] he could not answer the question of why he wanted to be President.  Oops. 
So you can say President Carter won renomination by default.  The sad part is that Kennedy still gave Carter a run for his money originally.
Recalling the election of 1980 as we approach the election of 2012 is quite topical.  In many ways, President Obama has followed in the footsteps of former President Carter.  With high unemployment, an inability and seeming lack of will to substantially address our growing national debt problem, low consumer confidence, fears of a double dip recession, rising fuel costs, etc., etc., ……it is all reminiscent of the one term Carter era.  Only back then it was described with words and phrases such as “days of malaise’, the misery index, inflation and other economically dooming descriptions and characteristics.  Today those words are represented by such words and as phrases as “stimulus”, investment, and unsustainable, temporary  job growth through government spending and expansion.
And much like Jimmy Carter, Barack Obama is unable to do anything about.  Oh he has addressed more joint sessions of Congress than most of the Presidents combined, and he has proposed solutions, but each of his solutions consisted of the same toxic mix of spending and growth of government.  And each time a variation of proposals is pursued, they produce the same results……………..  an unemployment rate of 9.1%, undetectable economic  growth, more debt, more doubt and more fear.
In fact it is so much like Jimmy Carter that you can use the words that Ted Kennedy used to explain why he was challenging Jimmy for renomination, to why any Democrat could offer a viable challenge to Barack Obama.
In the speech that Ted Kennedy gave from Nathaniel Hall in Boston that officially announced his presidential candidacy, Kennedy used these words to explain why he was running against Carter;

“Hopefully the President can provide the sense of direction needed by the nation. Only the President can inspire the common will to reach our goals. For many months we have been sinking into crisis. Yet we hear no clear summons from the center of power. Aims are not set. The means of realizing them are neglected. Conflicts in direction confuse our purpose. Government falters. Fear spreads that our leaders have resigned themselves to retreat. This country is not willing to sound retreat. It is ready to advance, it is willing to make a stance. And so am I.”

Even more eerily similar to today’s national condition were these words spoken by Kennedy in the same speech.  They offer further reasons for why Kennedy saw fit to deny President Carter a second term as President;

“I have a different view of the highest office in the land. A view of a forceful, effective presidency, in the thick of the action, at the center of all the great concerns that our people share. The failures are stark. Workers are forced to take a second job to make ends meet, because wages are rising only half as fast as prices. Families go into debt, and suffer real financial hardship to educate their children. This year the poorest 10% of our population must pay 119% of their for the necessities of life. That means they go without. And such distress goes beyond the plight of the poor. It clouds the future for millions in our society who have worked and worked hard to make their way, and who now see that America has begun to et them down.”

They say history has a way of repeating itself.  In the case of Barack Obama, it most certainly does.  Don’t take my words for it, take Ted Kennedy’s words for it.  See the full video of his 1980 presidential campaign announcement below this post.
 As 2012 approaches, while it seems as though there are no prominent Democrats who are willing to challenge President Obama for the Democrat’s presidential nomination, there are plenty of Democrats who believe he should be challenged.  For quite some time now, the slogan “don’t blame me, I voted for Hillary” has been running around Democrat circles.  Yet even she seems unwilling to challenge the President for renomination.  Perhaps if there were at least some prominent Democrats who believed more in country then Party, they would step up to plate and try to save both their Party and the nation from the devastating effects of a second Obama term as Ted Kennedy did.  But that has yet to be seen.

Meanwhile, most state laws make it so that a truly viable presidential candidate must make their candidacy official and file the proper papers around October.  That time is almost here.  So with that in mind White House 2012 asks you who you think should and could realistically challenge President Obama for the Democrat presidential nomination.  Who know’s?  Maybe it will give one of them an idea?

Click here to take the poll and tell us who you think could beat President Obama for the Democrat presidential nomination if they challenged him.

See the reasons that Ted Kennedy gave for challenging Jimmy Carter for renomination in 1980 but which could easily be applied to Barack Obama in 2012

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5 Responses

  1. […] Posts Ted Kennedy's Case Against Carter in 1980 Can Easily Be Made Against Obama in 2012Preliminary 2012 Presidential Primary and Caucus ScheduleJon HuntsmanG.O.P. PlatformElection […]

  2. […] Posted on January 5, 2012 by Kempite    Back in December, White House 2012 took a look at John McCain’s expected endorsement of Mitt Romney.  At that time, McCain had stated that he would not endorse a candidate until after the Iowa […]

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