Charles Krauthammer, writing for the Washington Post, takes a look at the November 2008 presidential election and says “…it was all ridiculous from the beginning. The ’08 election was a historical anomaly.” Then a theory about Henry Paulson and Timothy Geithner and the election crisis that gave the election to Barack Obama. See two astounding videos below.
The entire article Krauthammer here. Snippets:
Exactly a year later comes the empirical validation of that skepticism.
Virginia — presumed harbinger of the new realignment, having gone
Democratic in ’08 for the first time in 44 years — went red again.
With a vengeance….
In 2009 in Virginia, the black vote was down by 20 percent; the
under-30 vote by 50 percent. And as for independents, the ultimate
prize of any realignment, they bolted. In both Virginia and New Jersey
they’d gone narrowly for Obama in ’08. This year they went Republican
by a staggering 33 points in Virginia and by an equally shocking 30
points in New Jersey.
About administration excuses:
White House apologists will say the Virginia Democrat was weak. If the
difference between Bob McDonnell and Creigh Deeds was so great, how
come when the same two men ran against each other statewide for
attorney general four years ago the race was a virtual dead heat?
November ’08 was one shot, one time, never to be replicated. Nor was
November ’09 a realignment. It was a return to the norm — and
definitive confirmation that 2008 was one of the great flukes in
American political history.
My 5 cents (2 cents adjusted for inflation since 1980): Secretary of Treasury Henry Paulson and Timothy Geithner, then head of the Federal Reserve Bank of New York, figured that a financial meltdown of never-before-seen-proportions, would be a winning strategy for Barack Obama. Flash forward to September 14, 2008 and we awaken to President George W. Bush standing beside Paulson. Paulson told us that our financial world has changed, this very day, and he (Paulson – a Democrat) was in charge. Bush stood by, small and lonely, and let it happen. Paulson and the Federal Reserve had created their manufactured crisis and they handed the election to Barack Obama.
The Republicans did carry substantial political baggage into the
2008 election; but despite these considerable disadvantages, the open
seat election was shaping up as a very close contest in the weeks
before the national conventions and McCain took the lead after the
conventions, only to plummet in the polls with the Wall Street meltdown
in mid-September. The Wall Street meltdown was an unanticipated
financial crisis that shook the electorate. It was the game changer. It
derailed the course of the election and was critical in tipping the
election to Obama…
…around the time of the conventions, public opinion begins to gel.
More voters have made up their minds or given their choice some serious
thought by the conventions. While it is true that Obama led in the
polls before the conventions, the race was tight. In the two weeks
leading up to the conventions, the average Obama two-party support was
at 51.7 percent in the Real Clear Politics polls and at 51.0 percent in
Gallup’s registered voter tracking polls. In the week immediately
before the Democrats convened in Denver, Obama’s mean support was only
51.1 percent in Real Clear Politics and 50.6 percent in Gallup. An
election that could turn on a swing of one or two points, or even less,
is on track to be a close election.
McCain’s lead in the polls after the conventions was more than a
“brief honeymoon.” Polls after the conventions are important because a
significant number of voters make up their minds around convention
time. In the fifteen elections from 1948 to 2004, only one candidate
with an early September poll percentage over 51 percent lost his
…on its face, one would expect the Wall Street meltdown to make a
significant political difference. The events were unanticipated just
weeks before at the conventions and were catastrophic in magnitude. It
is hard to imagine how they could not be “game changers.” The first
sign that the subprime mortgage mess amounted to something considerably
more than a few isolated bankruptcies was on September 7 when the
government seized control of Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac. Eight days
later, Lehman Brothers declared bankruptcy and a distressed Merrill
Lynch was bought by the Bank of America. The next day, September 16,
the government made an $85 billion bailout loan to insurance giant AIG.
On September 19, President Bush called the crisis “a pivotal moment for
America’s economy” and asked Congress to “act now to protect our
nation’s economic health from serious risk.” …
While everyone understood that the economy was weak, not even
financial experts anticipated the crisis and its ramifications for the
economy. In mid-August, half way through the third quarter of the year,
the Federal Reserve Bank of Philadelphia released a survey of 47
prominent economic forecasters. These forecasters predicted a real GDP
third quarter growth rate of 1.2 percent. This would indicate a
sluggish economy, but not one in recession….
The meltdown was a crisis in its own right that exacted a severe
cost to the economy, much as it had taken its toll on the stock market
(and would take on the political fortunes of the in-party)….
…did Americans understand this? Did Americans regard the meltdown as a crisis, as the derailed election thesis claims?…The polling evidence is that the public was staggered by the crisis.
Allowing for some normal dissipation of the convention bump,
McCain’s poll standing early in the meltdown crisis (September 14) was
about 51 percent in both Gallup and in the Real Clear Politics poll
Less than three weeks later (October 2), after the crisis was in full
meltdown, McCain’s poll standing had dropped to 46 percent in Gallup
and 47 percent in the Real Clear Politics poll average, about where the
final vote percentage wound up.
…could there be an explanation for McCain’s late September poll
plunge other than the Wall Street meltdown? Could the McCain fall and
Obama rise in the polls be the result of some other factor? Two
possibilities have been suggested-the debates and Sarah Palin’s
post-convention difficulties. The debates are not plausible as an
alternative explanation because of timing. McCain’s drop in the polls
began well before the first debate on September 26….
Was the McCain plummet in the polls a negative reaction to his
selection of Sarah Palin
as a vice presidential candidate or a negative reaction to the Wall
Street meltdown? The evidence again supports the impact of the
Geithner’s credibility questioned by Rep. Cliff Stearns (R-FL), as well
as the credibility as the Federal Reserve.
In the second
video below you’ll hear and see a discussion about the Federal Reserve
Bank and all of the other “big” banks in America (erase the image of
Eliot Spitzer and high-paid call girls from your visual – but pay
attention to what Spitzer says, including “a ponzi scheme and an inside
Well, it is all history now but we know this (1) those who do not know history are doomed to repeat it, and (2) those who do not remember history are doomed to repeat it. I will continue to look forward to Charles Krauthammer’s election myths anytime he is not talking about the elegance of an Obama speech delivery.