Who will show up on election day, and will they look like America?
In a month of weekly presidential debates, Thursday evening brings two fresh faces to the mix, as Republican Vice Presidential nominee Paul Ryan and incumbent Vice President Joe Biden go head to head.
But lurking behind these two men is the memory of last week's first presidential debate. Writer J.C. Aevaliotis argues that evening revealed the true difference between Gov. Romney and President Obama, and that it comes down to what they think America looks like. "100% of America, Republicans are saying. Mitt Romney’s electoral fate, and maybe the GOP’s future, depend on how well they understand what that means," said Aevaliotis. Read an excerpt below or listen above:
...On the eve of the first presidential debate of the election season, Sean Hannity and Tucker Carlson spent a full day hyping an exclusive video they described as “explosive,” promising that the newly unearthed video of Obama speaking about race would change the dynamics of the election. The video, a 5-year-old public speech at a university in Virginia, was greeted with a collective “meh.”
Carlson and Hannity insisted that the video contained excerpts removed in other reporting, that the coverage of the speech in 2007 was incomplete and biased in favor of Obama. Here’s Carlson: "People say 'this has already been reported.' Well, actually, it hasn't been reported, and I know because I reported on it the first time."
And what Hannity and Carlson claim is that the video shows is a radically racial Obama, fomenting discord with intentionally incendiary rhetoric delivered in a blacker-sounding voice than Obama’s normal voice. The “news” was quickly drowned out by the hype of the first debate, though a handful of prominent conservatives claim that the video shows us a “true” Obama, ignored by most media. A simultaneously racist and racially-divisive Obama.
On the conservative blog PowerLine, Paul Mirengoff said that the speech isn’t “ancient history,” but a “sincere” statement of how Obama sees America. Mirengoff summarizes Obama’s view this way: "America needs to redistribute wealth from whites to blacks in order to offset, as best it can, the nation’s basic racism.” Mirengoff goes on to say that “the redistribution of wealth from middle class suburbs to the inner city constitutes the core of Obama’s domestic agenda for his second term,” and that “Obama will aggressively pursue that agenda through executive orders, regulations, and coercion if America makes the grave mistake of re-electing him.”
The chord Mirengoff, Hannity, and Carlson attempted to strike is a resonant one for conservatives, many of whom believe that Obama’s not-so-secret electoral strategy is to dole out free goodies from the public coffers to ensure that welfare recipients turn out in droves to re-elect him.