Politics and Public Opinion, Elections

Ask the scholars: What’s your reaction to the election results? (Updated)

U.S. President Barack Obama, who won a second term in office by defeating Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, waves as he addresses supporters during his election night victory rally in Chicago, November 7, 2012. REUTERS/Jim Bourg

U.S. President Barack Obama, who won a second term in office by defeating Republican presidential nominee Mitt Romney, waves as he addresses supporters during his election night victory rally in Chicago, November 7, 2012. REUTERS/Jim Bourg

In the wake of President Obama’s reelection, I asked several AEI scholars how they accounted for the decisive Democratic victory last night. The reaction to the results here at AEI unanimously suggest that, while the Democrats ran a hard game, they came out on top by being able to convince the voters that their policies serve the people best. AEI’s Henry Olsen suggested that the Romney campaign ultimately failed to make a lasting impression on voters that could have paved the way to the presidency. As a consequence, voters were misguided by the too-good-to-be-true policies that may hurt people in the long run:


Foreign defense scholar Michael Rubin illuminates another issue associated with the sugar-coated Obama policies fed to voters: Military spending cuts. A large decrease in the military may appeal to the war-fatigued populous today, but down the road could lead to a rocky and uncertain future.


Regardless of the fundamental division between issues like military spending and the role of government, polling expert Karlyn Bowman sees the the Republican defeat this year as a wake up call for conservatives who refuse to adapt to the changing demographics of the nation. As she recounts, there are a lot of lessons to be learn from this election. First off, take nothing for granted.


Health expert, Roger Bate, expresses concern for the changing America as reflected this election. Originally from Britain, Bate came to America chasing after the dream of freedom and limited government. Now with America walking down the same path as the Europe, Bate worries that the America he once knew will soon be ancient history.

4 thoughts on “Ask the scholars: What’s your reaction to the election results? (Updated)

  1. The results were a victory for corruption as we will now see Obama serve out Bush’s forth term. The US will continue to meddle in the affairs of other countries. Government will continue to grow as it has. The unfunded liabilities will pile up as GAAP deficits keep growing. Eventually the USD will crash but the outcome of the election would only have changed the time of the eventual collapse by a few months at most. And in the end voters will get exactly what they deserve.

  2. Obama won in part because he got away with blatant lies

    George Orwell expressed a fear in the book 1984 that leaders would gain so much influence they could: “announce that two and two made five, and you would have to believe it.” Previously he wrote: “This prospect frightens me much more than bombs”.

    We seem to have reached that point. Obama claimed at the Democratic National Convention on Sept. 6th, 2012: “I’ll use the money we’re no longer spending on war to pay down our debt”.

    Yet the White House site contains his 2013 budget proposal with a table showing his planned national debt at the end of each year through 2022. It adds at least $900 billion to the debt every year, $9.6 trillion over a decade.

    If a CEO lied about his company’s finances to get people to buy stock, the public would cry “fraud! send him to jail!”. Should we trust someone to run our government that we wouldn’t trust to run a company? This isn’t a one time gaffe, he has repeated it from the State of the Union in January, through dozens of speeches into October and a campaign commercial.

    People failed to point out his own site contradicts him, there is no need to trust a partisan source. He’ll keep lying if people don’t spread the word since he gets away with it. See this short video http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=3zJbYNDRn_Y or http://www.PoliticsDebunked.com for more including links.

  3. If you step back and look at the big picture, the future in the US is not bright. A majority of our citizens will be born to single mothers, expecting the government to pay for their wants, and completely devoid of any appreciation for the basic principles on which our country was founded.

    What can we do? We can hope they change. Likelihood of that happening is slim. Perhaps some asians will start to realize that their dislike of the Republican party is self defeating and that they are as much at odds with the new majority as are Republicans. Perhaps some hispanics will eventually become more focused on the moral issues and the fact that the demcratic party’s action run contrary to their core beliefs. But I am not optimistic, and see only more illegal immigration and more a run to the public trough.

    There really is only one alternative: Secession. A peaceful and lawful process by which the majority of the citizens in each state vote for join a new union.

    The United Nation’s charter recognizes the right of self determination of peoples. The USSR disbanded into states where people who shared a common ideology could escape the central government’s control. The separatist party in Quebec has been toying with this issue for years, even running the province. The Kosavars were able to establish a separate country. So should we.

    At some point this must become an issue for serious discussion.

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