“The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act that I will sign today -- a plan that meets the principles I laid out in January -- is the most sweeping economic recovery package in our history.” -- President Obama at the Feb. 17, 2009 signing of his stimulus first stimulus package in Denver.
The deteriorating situation in the Middle East may end up making this election an unexpected battle over foreign policy.
Given the new dangers and uncertainties sewn by the Arab Spring last year, particularly the emboldened regime in Iran and the anxiety in Israel, the chances for a regional conflagration are higher now than at any time since U.S. troops, now withdrawn, invaded Iraq in 2003.
That could bring $5 gasoline, economic disruption and a severe testing of old alliances. It would also mean that the preferred foreign-policy platform for the incumbent president’s re-election bid – dead terrorists and troops headed home – would be thrown over.
Maybe the election will be about social issues.
The Obama Democrats are certainly hoping to make the case to suburban female voters that Republicans are hoping to rob women of access to birth control. Republicans, meanwhile, will argue, as they did with Planned Parenthood funding and federal subsidies for elective abortions, that President Obama’s health law compels citizens to violate their consciences...