by John Hawkins | November 14, 2008 5:00 am
All the messianic rhetoric and worshipful press coverage of Barack Obama seems to have sunk in because the American people have some extraordinarily high expectations for his first term,
Nearly two-thirds of those questioned in a CNN/Opinion Research Corp. survey released Thursday said President-elect Obama will change the country for the better. Twenty-five percent said he won’t change the country either way, and only 9 percent indicated they think Obama will change the country for the worse.
“The bar is being set awfully high for an Obama presidency,” said CNN Polling Director Keating Holland.
According to the poll, most people think it’s likely that Obama will improve race relations, improve economic conditions, bring stability to the financial markets, make the United States safer from terrorism, reduce the country’s dependence on foreign oil, reduce global warming, win the war in Afghanistan, and remove U.S. troops from Iraq without causing a major upheaval in that country.
“That’s a pretty big to-do list,” said Holland.
In a question separate from whether Obama will change the country for the better, 76 percent of poll respondents said the country will be better off four years from now, while 19 percent say it will be worse.
Three-quarters of those polled also have a favorable view of Obama, up 12 points since the election. Among black Americans the number was 99 percent, while among Republicans it was 41 percent.
The overall 75 percent favorable rating “makes Obama the most popular president-elect in at least a quarter of a century,” Holland said.
The fascinating thing about this is that Barack Obama has never actually, ya know, achieved anything beyond getting elected to office. This will be the first time in his entire life when he’s going to be put into a position where’s he going to be expected to make tough decisions and get results — and let me tell you, the next four years are probably going to be brutal.
America’s enemies are likely to test Obama, Al-Qaeda will be trying to pull off more attacks, we’re going to have more bailouts, deficits like nothing we’ve ever seen before in our country’s history, an economy that will be in recession, a war in progress, and liberals demanding that he implement an agenda that would move the country ideologically somewhere between France and Cuba.
In other words, Obama ran as an “all things to all people” candidate and everyone seems to be actually expecting him to deliver as opposed to assuming that he’s just another politician who said whatever it took to get elected. Boy, do those people have a reality check coming when they get to see the difference between the Hopey McChange they thought they knew on the campaign trail and the Hopey McChange who will actually be making decisions that affect their lives in the White House.
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