Rod St. Aubyn: Barack Obama Giving Republicans The Opposite Of An October Surprise?
There has been speculation that the President was going to spring some “October Surprise” to help Democrats during the upcoming November election. With control of the Senate at stake, Democrats are very cautious and worried what may happen next. Recent news events could result in these events being an “October Counter-Surprise”.
A hatchet attack on some New York policemen is alleged to have been made by another radicalized Islamic “nut job.” This follows the Islamic sympathizer attacks and killing of military personnel in two separate incidents in Canada. It is interesting to note the difference between the US and Canada. In Canada, these two attacks were quickly described by the Canadian press, police, and other officials as “terrorist” attacks.
Based on news reports police stated that the New York attacker had expressed Islamic statements. Yet no one dares call it a terrorist attack. With police and military personnel on high alert because of ISIS threats on these people and continued “intelligence chatter”, the President’s foreign policy failures continue to escalate the public’s negative public opinion of this administration. His total defiance of any “boots on the ground” strategy against ISIS has been roundly criticized by his own military leaders. His other foreign policy failures have been chronicled by Obama’s former CIA Director and Defense Secretary, Leon Panetta.
Now we have the second recent national news story with a doctor in New York being diagnosed with Ebola. This follows the death of a patient in Dallas and the infection of two health care workers there. News reports that this doctor had recently come back from West Africa after treating some Ebola patients. It was reported that the doctor had not been feeling well for the past few days and had recently taken the subway and had taken a cab to a bowling alley, supposedly before showing any symptoms.
Both Republican and Democratic legislators have urged the President to stop flights to and from that region of Africa. The President declined to do that. The administration said that banning the flights would cause significant economic harm to that region of the world. If Ebola does spread within the US imagine the economic impact that will occur not only for the US, but for the entire world. Instead he is requiring that all incoming flights must come to 5 designated airports where they will institute an Ebola screening protocol.
How would you like to live in one of those 5 cities?
Now we are faced with another Ebola infection and who knows how many others have been exposed. We should follow the lead of other countries that have temporarily discontinued flights to and from that region. We should temporarily suspend all visas for people traveling through those countries. We could make exceptions for flights for special purposes such as medical supplies and personnel. People coming from that region on approved flights should be quarantined for the required 21 days to avoid any further exposure.
The President appointed an Ebola Czar who has no medical background or experience with Ebola and is basically a political hack for the President. This move was even questioned by several Democrats.
The President’s approval rating has never been lower and generally Democratic candidates have been distancing themselves from the President. The President made several controversial statements that make the Democratic candidates cringe such as “I am not on the ballot this fall. Michelle’s pretty happy about that. But make no mistake: these policies are on the ballot. Every single one of them.” Democratic Senate candidates are even reluctant to admit that they voted for the President in 2008 and 2012.
To top that off, on Rev. Al Sharpton’s radio program, the President explained that it was okay for the Democratic candidates to criticize him in public because he knows that they will support him when they are in Washington. His quotes were “The bottom line is, though, these are all folks who vote with me; they have supported my agenda in Congress,” He continued: “So this isn’t about my feelings being hurt.
These are folks who are strong allies and supporters of me. I tell them — I said, you do what you need to do to win. I will be responsible for making sure that our voters turn out.” To say these things privately to the Democrats candidates is one thing, but to publicly give the Republicans these great sound bites is absolutely incredible.
So instead of an “October Surprise”, I personally think that the President is handing the Democrats an “October Counter-Surprise”. The terror attacks, the President’s foreign policy failures, and now his mishandling of the Ebola policies will most likely give the Republicans an early Christmas present. We can’t peek in this package yet, but we should know in just a few more days.