by Eileen | 3:46 pm, January 15, 2013 | Comments Off
Obama is blowing off his one-time staffers. They’re upset about difficulty in getting tickets to Inaugural events. On that I don’t blame them. I myself have commented once or twice about the Republican tendency to marked ingratitude.
But I don’t count this as a surprise. I called a second term full of pay-offs to pals and slavish attention to securing a legacy. Without a reelection bid to consider, Barack Obama will hardly be thinking about people whose usefulness to him is at an end. I am tempted to make a churlish remark – ‘Silly staffer, did you really think that man cared?’ But I am quite guilty of believing in campaigns and non-profits and people who took and took and took and then stopped even taking phone calls. It hurts to be used, and I’ve got to offer some sympathy to people who worked for something they believed in and got frozen out of the spoils of victory.
(Assuming that’s what happened. No matter what, not everyone can go to the party. The aggrieved former staffers spoke anonymously so as not to jeopardize the possibility of landing jobs with the Obama Administration. I do wonder about people who label the guy an ingrate but won’t go on the record because they want to work for him, again. More likely, these are people intelligent enough to know that openly criticizing Barack Obama will close doors all over the place.)
A true surprise is the claim in the ninth paragraph that Obama staffers were paid less than Romney’s people, were laid off a full pay-period earlier, and lost insurance earlier. I’d still bet that figure is an average and thus reflects highly compensated consultant types. Anyway, the complaints are familiar.
People were laid off two months ago but are only now being offered placement assistance. Many of those benefits are useless if you aren’t already in DC. Ex-staffers have been asked to pay for their own ‘appreciation’ party. Tell me about it.
The famed coordination, follow-through, and granular focus of the re-election is conspicuously absent when it comes to working with jobless Obama supporters. It looks like there may be legitimate concern over how much effort Barack Obama and his top lieutenants are going to put into maintaining that breathtaking ground game now that it can’t be of direct benefit to Barack Obama.
On one level, I really, really hope that loopy far leftists do see their ground game collapse. At this point, the GOP’s own ground game is such a joke that the Republicans pretty much needs the Dems to shoot themselves in the foot. Do I really think these are people who will let something as magnificently effective as Organizing for America just whither on the vine? Not a chance.
I know Barack Obama cares about little else besides his own legacy at this point. But I don’t think he’s so foolish that he can’t anticipate how bad it will look for his reputation as a second-term POTUS and then an ex-POTUS to let everything that got him elected fall into disrepair. Hell, that man is a textbook example of a narcissist who may be tricked into doing things for others out of obsession with his own image. Nor do I think the rest of the DNC will sit idly by. Simply, if the President does not make the requisite gracious offering of turning over the OFA reins to the party, the party will find a way to take it from him. Democratic brass know he’s an S.O.B. Only, he’s their S.O.B. They’ll work with him as long as he reciprocates but they don’t share the emotional blindness that his true believers manifest.
We, as in the GOP and all her little daughter projects, screwed up precisely because we let things go to seed. If the 113th Congress and the first half of Mr. Obama’s second term go as I think they will, the Democrats will be in desperate need of goodwill by the 2014 midterms. I do not for one second mean that right-wingers can bank on that. With the GOP controlling the House, we’ll be blamed for failures – rightly in some instances and wrongly in others, but blame is still blame. Also, even if the Dems do nothing for two years, they’ll still be ahead of us.
What lesson do I think we need to draw from this? Do the granular work (already, I think, a point I have made strongly) and don’t let a small group control access to the data. Never base your hopes of success on pressuring the other sides will screw up. Also, return your damn phone calls.
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