President Obama asked for patience in reversing job losses that he said were a decade in the making, in a campaign-style appearance that sought to recall some of the excitement of his long-shot candidacy in 2008.
Returning to the state that set him on a path to the White House, Obama visited an Alcoa factory Tuesday to underscore the importance of advanced manufacturing in America’s economic recovery.
He cited strides made in rehiring manufacturing workers who had been laid off during the recession, part of about 2 million private sector jobs created in the last 15 months. But as he often does in such speeches, he conceded that the economic recovery hasn’t touched large swaths of the workforce.
Wearing a white shirt and tie — no suit jacket in sight — Obama said, “For a lot of Americans, those numbers don’t matter if they’re still out of work or if they have a job that doesn’t pay enough to pay the mortgage, to pay the bills. So we’ve got more work to do and that work is going to take some time. The problems that we developed didn’t happen overnight. We’re not going to solve them overnight either, but we will solve them.”
The Alcoa plant produces advanced aerospace and military parts, including the wings of Air Force One. It was chosen to highlight improvements in the manufacturing sector. The Bettendorf plant now employs 2,200 people — more than before the recession kicked in.
Will a majority of Iowans buy it come November 2012? A look at the post-2008 registration numbers in Iowa indicates Obama’s lukewarm speeches on the economy will likely be a tough sell:
Much has changed since Obama’s triumph in the caucuses. Iowa is a swing state that Obama will be hard-pressed to hold in 2012. Since he took office, Iowa Republicans have eaten into the Democrats’ registration advantage and also picked up the governor’s seat and a majority of state Assembly seats.
When Obama was sworn in, Iowa had 111,000 more registered Democrats than Republicans. This month, the Democratic registration advantage stood at 36,000.
The Eastern Iowa county that Obama visited illustrates the political perils. In 2008 Obama easily carried Scott County, the third-largest in the state. But in the midterm elections last year, county voters backed Republican Terry Branstad for governor with 51% of the vote.
“This is going to be a jobs election and it’s only going to become painfully obvious that the only job the president is interested in saving is his own,’’ Republican National Committee Chairman Reince Priebus said in a conference call with reporters Tuesday morning. “He’s in Iowa today because he’s interested in saving his job.’’
And, of course, while it’s up to the people to decide whether or not President Obama gets another four years to “fundamentally transform” America, this President -as evidenced by all the “we”‘s in his speech – still doesn’t understand that it’s not government that will get this economy turned around it’s the people. I hate to sound cliche, but the best thing the government can do is to get the heck out of the way and let people who actually know how to run businesses aid in getting the economy moving again. This will happen, in large part, once the stifling regulations put in place by this administration are relaxed, ObamaCare is repealed or dismantled piece by piece, public sector unions cease to be coddled by state governments, and taxes and fees are lowered.
Then again, it’s not exactly surprising that nearly two and a half years after he took the oath of office promising “a new day” in America – and, essentially, a chicken in every pot, Obama still has not reversed course on the economy, even in the face of the obvious- because you are never, ever supposed to try and confuse a diehard liberal with the facts. In fact, if there were Nobel Peace Prizes given for willful ignorance by a world leader, this President would be a top contender.
Oh, wait …