Randy Shaw: 2013 will lack the excitement of a presidential election year. But it is activism between elections that brings change.
Randy Shaw: Activists are in far better spirits than one year ago. Progressives see that the public is on their side, and, unlike in the aftermath of the 2008 elections, are staying engaged in the major policy struggles that elections are supposed to be all about.
Randy Shaw: Americans may “hate” politics, but the media cannot get enough of it. Since Obama’s re-election we have been deluged with stories not simply about Hillary Clinton, but also about Republicans Marco Rubio and Jeb Bush positioning themselves for runs in 2016.
Randy Shaw: While the media’s highlighting “the unfortunate” during the holiday season raises vital private donations to help their needs, letting the politicians responsible off the hook perpetuates the crisis.
Randy Shaw: Activists now must write a new script for the post-2012 election by pushing the President to keep his progressive campaign commitments on taxes, the budget, and, most urgently, comprehensive immigration reform, where the time for action is now.
Randy Shaw: The same folks who “sold” the Iraq invasion and the housing bubble are all in on the “Mitt-mentum” theme, but this time the voters are not buying.
Randy Shaw: Obama lost a lot of volunteer enthusiasm after October 3. While he regained some of it after the second debate, the real resurgence did not occur until Obama’s commanding performance this week.
Randy Shaw: President Barack Obama came out of the box breathing fire last night, offering the strongest debate performance of his political career.
Randy Shaw: While Obama will be sure to hit most of the key talking points he missed on October 3, his past history raises questions about his capacity to deliver the highly partisan, aggressive arguments that Joe Biden energized Democrats with last week.
Randy Shaw: Joe Biden gave the type of debate performance that, if given by Barack Obama last week, would have ended the race. Obama supporters can only hope that the President was carefully taking notes.
Randy Shaw: Obama’s campaign is giving progressives something they have not experienced since FDR: a clear cut ideological victory for progressive economic strategies and values. And Republicans know it.
Randy Shaw: While progressives will be forced to invest major resources in defeating Prop 32, the other major ballot initiatives all put conservatives on the defensive and would further progressive change.
Randy Shaw: The truth is that no Republican could win the White House in 2012 running on the failed tax cuts and disastrous war-first foreign policy of President George W. Bush.