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Maybe the Public Would Like Democrats More if Michelle Obama Went Back to Telling Us How Much America Sucks

Posted By Calvin Freiburger On November 1, 2010 @ 3:51 pm In NewsReal Blog | No Comments

Above: Electoral Gold, Guaranteed

The big day’s almost here. Tomorrow the American people will go to the polls and let Washington, DC, know just what they’ve thought of the Hope & Change agenda. Many predict the Democrats will lose big, causing leftists to conjure up excuses for the defeat that mean something, anything other than that the country just doesn’t agree with them.

At the Daily Beast, Dayo Olopade has an especially novel theory: the voters simply haven’t seen enough of one of the Democrats’ biggest assets, First Lady Michelle Obama:

At a time when her husband’s approval rating has plummeted, hers stand strong at 70 percent—making her one of the most popular figures in Washington. And she appeals to a crucial constituency–female voters, a decisive bloc this fall. “She’s a terrific asset to Democrats this cycle,” says Jen Bluestein, communications director at Emily’s List. It helps that Mrs. Obama projects that purple glow her husband used to talk about. “She’s very popular with Democrats but she’s also increasingly popular with Republicans and Independents,” adds Hari Sevugan, a spokesperson for the Democratic National Committee.

But at a time when a bumper crop of women candidates are on the ballot—ten for governor, six for the Senate, and 138 for the House—a disturbing number of women voters are either checked out of the election or forsaking the Democratic Party, according to recent polling by Gallup, CBS and the New York Times.

Which raises a tough question: Could the country’s most popular female political figure have started earlier, shouted louder, and helped turn the straying sisters around? Or has the First Lady—who famously coined the title “mom-in-chief”—relinquished the feminist brand, to the detriment of the Democrats?

Several paragraphs later, though, the author admits that where Michelle has hit the campaign trail, she hasn’t been an asset:

Murray, Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, Senators Russ Feingold and Michael Bennet, and Illinois Senate candidate Alexi Giannoulas all rallied with the first lady, yet are even or trailing in recent polls.

This would seem to suggest that Mrs. Obama’s simply not that significant a factor, but of course, that can’t possibly be it; Olopade suggests the problem may be her shift to a non-partisan, “home-and-hearth” presentation, rather than casting herself as a more overtly political figure, a feminist alternative to the likes of Sarah Palin.

In other words, Michelle Obama’s not making a splash these days because she comes across as too conservative and traditional. Interesting theory. The only problem is, it has the transformation exactly backwards. Home-and-Hearth Michelle came after the American people met Leftist Crusader Michelle in 2008—and the more they heard, the less they liked it. The public tends not to like being told that government is going to decide who has to “give up a piece of the pie so that someone else can have more.” They like hearing that their country is “just downright mean” even less. And the idea that the only praiseworthy thing America has done in decades is voting for her husband? Not exactly a crowd-pleaser.

Somehow, these details couldn’t be fit into an eighteen-hundred-word-essay on the subject of how the American people might react to what Michelle Obama has to say. Weird…

It doesn’t matter how much logical contortion and selective memory loss it takes; to the Left, there’s always an excuse for why their ideas and personalities aren’t a bigger hit with the American people. Sometimes voters merely have other things on their mind, or just aren’t smart enough to know a good thing when they see it. Other times, the leftist didn’t present there case right, or—the Left’s personal favorite—they sounded or acted too much like conservatives, which everybody knows is political Kryptonite.

But could it be that, just maybe, the voters do understand leftists like Michelle Obama when they dare to be candid, and they reject them anyway? Perish the thought! Somehow, the shortest distance between two points is never a straight line.

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Hailing from Fond du Lac, Wisconsin, Calvin Freiburger is a political science major at Hillsdale College.  He also writes for the Hillsdale Forum and his personal website, Calvin Freiburger Online.


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