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How the Financial Crisis secured Obama¡¯s victory


¡°It was a pivotal two weeks of the election¡­ It changed the structure of the race, in that it just never went back. Once people had rendered that verdict, it just didn¡¯t change.¡±
                                                                                         ---David Axelrod (Obama¡¯s chief strategist)

It was in early September. Obama¡¯s general-election campaign, which worked so well against Clinton, had gone stale. The Democrat candidate had watched Senator John McCain drawing huge crowds together with his new running mate Sarah Palin.

That was the very moment when the global earthquake hit. With the bankruptcy of Lehman Brothers, which provoked the biggest corporate collapse in US history and an international financial meltdown, the Obama team almost universally concluded: Obama must shift the focus of the campaign to the economy. And that¡¯s what transformed the presidential race.

If John McCain is one of the few Republicans who smartly got rid of the burden of his party and came out clean as a former prisoner of war, Democrats knew how to exploit his weaknesses and to enhance their own strengths. While the Republican Party had some comparative advantages as to foreign and military policy, American voters tend to regard to Democratic Party as the party better able to deal with the American economy and to create prosperity.

It was a moment neither the senator for Illinois nor his opponent had anticipated. But Obama was the one who prepared it. In the following days,  the Obama team became more aggressive towards McCain¡¯s weakness on proposing recession solutions, blaming at the same time the Bush government¡¯s irresponsible gambling in the international financial system.

Even the candidate himself, criticized as too cool, too cerebral and too detached, suddenly had an opportunity to show those qualities as to be reassuring and presidential.

As for McCain, already struggling with the economic issue, he made an even bigger mistake: he made a surprise announcement on Sep. 24 that he would suspend his campaign, leaving an ¡°erratic¡± image of himself, unable to handle a crisis, economic or otherwise.

Finally, Obama made it. Yes, he did, with the blessing of ¡°Obama luck¡±, a kind of luck that favored only a prepared candidate.

author:MSN Space      Published at: 2008-11-25 16:59:25
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