2012: Who will represent the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party?

Barack Obama's feckless leadership, apparently intended to position him as a moderate in his bid for a second term, won't get him reelected. The Republicans know that nothing they can throw at him, no matter how ridiculous or how ugly, will blow back on them. And covered as he will be in GOP crap, he won't pass the "smell test" for many voters; they won't be able to tell you exactly what, but something surely is wrong with a guy who causes this much controversy. Whoever the GOP nominee is, he won't need to begin every morning of the campaign by hosing off yesterday's political dirt.Where is the Democratic wing of the Democratic Party?

Not to say the president won't win another term. He's been very lucky in his opponents thus far -- Hillary! McCain!! Palin!!! -- and there is no reason to think that the Republicans won't help him out again, as they did when they selected John McCain over Mike Huckabee. The GOP doesn't have much of a bench to draw on, after all, so whomever they nominate is unlikely to stand up well cara a cara with Obama. Even so, the Democrats like to run with a handicap by obscuring their differences with their opponents or campaigning on Republican ideas, as if it would be unfair somehow to give the voters a clear choice (between Social Darwinism and, say, the New Deal). Instead of drawing parallels as he seems determined to do between himself and the great bloviator Ronald Reagan, if Obama is looking for a role model he might do worse than to look to fighting Harry Truman, a leader who didn't need Gangs of Six to tell him where the buck stopped.

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