Osama bin Laden is dead

by on May 1, 2011 at 11:30 pm in Uncategorized | Permalink

My quick take is that that Obama will be re-elected (getting Osama is way more important than Iraq or Saddam in the American mind, attacks on American soil, etc.), at this point the Republicans won’t try to beat him from the center and will thus nominate a more extreme candidate and lose badly, and the most important effects will be on Pakistan, not this country.

What do you think?

p.s. Check out this photo.

zeeb May 1, 2011 at 11:31 pm

*getting Osama, you mean…

Robert May 1, 2011 at 11:32 pm

Mixed up Obama and Osama by accident, or did you?

David Pinto May 1, 2011 at 11:32 pm

People thought George Bush the first was unbeatable after the first Iraq war. If the economy keeps tanking, this won’t matter.

mulp May 2, 2011 at 1:47 am

He was unbeatable. Until the Tea Party wing of the Republican Party attacked him for trying to reduce the deficit and they voted for Ross Perot.

Bill Clinton, responding to the Tea Party mood, promised not to hike taxes before being elected. Then quickly announced that the budget deficit was too high to avoid tax hikes, getting that issue out of the way quickly. Still, the Tea Party struct back, and Clinton spent seven years fighting the deficit hiking Republicans, forcing them to cut military spending just to get small tax cuts. While Clinton was able to address some health care cost problems and expand coverage, he wasn’t able to address the long term costs.

Once Clinton left office, taxes were cut, spending increased, and health care costs exploded. (Clinton cut a deal on Medicare to control cost but he was forced into shifting coverage to private insurers, and the cost controls ended up being negated by the doc fixes.)

Obama hasn’t made the mistakes of HW Bush and Clinton in reducing the deficit.

After all, reducing the deficit like HW did turned victory into defeat.

Thomas May 2, 2011 at 8:14 am

Great–a response that gets politics, political science, policy and history wrong.

Laserlight May 2, 2011 at 11:46 am

Well, you knew that as soon as you saw who wrote the comment.

Popeye May 1, 2011 at 11:33 pm

President gets a short-term poll boost, the Republicans will run Romney, Obama gets re-elected. Not too different from yesterday’s forecast.

Jana H May 1, 2011 at 11:34 pm

Maybe.

If gas prices and grocery prices continue to shoot skyward and the economy continues along in a moribund state, I’m not sure how effective saying, “But I got Osama!” will be. But alas, I am no prognosticator.

a Nadder May 1, 2011 at 11:34 pm

I think the ubiquitousness of getting Obama mixed up with Osama (see above) might temper his political success just yet!

longley May 1, 2011 at 11:34 pm

I know its late, but that’s a pretty significant typo…

Scott May 1, 2011 at 11:35 pm

“(getting Obama is way more important than Iraq or Saddam in the American mind)”
Heck of a slip there, Cowen.

Eli Koz May 1, 2011 at 11:35 pm

I think you’re right, but made a rather egregious typo…

Highgamma May 1, 2011 at 11:35 pm

Never underestimate the ability of the American people to forget a military victory. (I’m thinking of George H.W. Bush.) If gas prices are $4/gallon next year, Obama still loses.

Dan May 1, 2011 at 11:37 pm

What I think is that you meant to write “getting Osama” not “getting Obama.”

Tyler Cowen May 1, 2011 at 11:37 pm

Typo corrected!

slittOf theTongue May 3, 2011 at 10:04 am

No typo intended.

You betcha
!

Skip May 1, 2011 at 11:37 pm

“President gets a short-term poll boost, the Republicans will run Romney, Obama gets re-elected. Not too different from yesterday’s forecast.”

My prediction exactly. I think he will (damned well better IMO) get a solid boost in the polls, then those will fade.

ck May 2, 2011 at 8:13 am

A famous political economist once said,

A recession is when your neighbor loses his job, a depression is when you lose your job, and a recovery is when Jimmy Carter loses his job.

Obama will still lose the Presidency. Probably to Romney but maybe to Daniels if we’re lucky.

Jacob May 1, 2011 at 11:38 pm

Freudian slip? Maybe Obama isn’t such a shoe-in after all!

Jason May 1, 2011 at 11:39 pm

Correct the typo, its a big one, Osama not Obama

Erica Peters May 1, 2011 at 11:40 pm

“Getting Osama is way more important” – I think that’s what you meant to say.

JohnMcG May 1, 2011 at 11:41 pm

1. You probably want to double-check your spelling/names.

2. I don’t think there was any way the US public was going to make the first black president a one-termer.

RSS feed reader May 1, 2011 at 11:42 pm

your RSS feed reads: “getting Obama is way more important…”

Bruce May 1, 2011 at 11:42 pm

If Obama has the good sense to use this (getting Osama) as a way to declare victory in Afghanistan and get our troops out, then yes, he can ride this to a second term (unless the economy really tanks). When (not if) Karzai fails and the Taliban comes back, we can still say we got our man.

Thomas May 1, 2011 at 11:42 pm

Killing bin Laden in Pakistan is likely to cause additional unrest, in Pakistan in particular but elsewhere as well. The story for 40-50 year old Americans is over; the story for everyone else is not.

Eric May 1, 2011 at 11:43 pm

1st) I think you mean “(getting Osama is way more important…)”
2nd) Initially I would agree, but realizing that American memory is very short as far as politics is concerned this will give him clout for a while, but not long enough to get him through the election.

I hope.

John M. May 1, 2011 at 11:44 pm

I don’t think this will sway anyone in any direction. Those that hate Obama will never give him credit for “getting” Osama. Those who favor Obama will keep on. Those on the fence will more likely be swayed by wherever the economy ends up by summer ’12. That seems like it will be the deciding factor. Osama bin Laden is a nickel spent long ago.

Also, I think that the right likes having someone to hate in the White House. They get far more nervous and divided when one of their own is in office.

John Voorheis May 1, 2011 at 11:44 pm

Getting, ummm… Osama, I assume you mean. Unless that’s some (in particularly bad taste) mind teaser.

Lewis May 1, 2011 at 11:45 pm

“It’s the economy stupid.”

Katy May 1, 2011 at 11:45 pm

Watch your ‘b’s and ‘s’s very carefully in this post, Tyler. I think you mean “Osama” instead of the second “Obama.’

John May 1, 2011 at 11:46 pm

Gotta be careful with switching “s” with “b” tonight, Tyler. Just looking out for you. :)

tenis May 1, 2011 at 11:46 pm

um, getting *obama*? Com’on.

jjdaddyo May 1, 2011 at 11:46 pm

I think you just made one of the 4000 Freudian slips we’re going to hear on cable TV this week: “(getting Obama is way more important than Iraq or Saddam in the American mind)”
Shouldn’t that be “getting OSAMA”?

CptnJustc May 1, 2011 at 11:48 pm

“getting Obama is way more important than Iraq or Saddam in the American mind”

Oh, we’ll get him, alright. :D

Lorenzo from Oz May 1, 2011 at 11:48 pm

Your first line has two ‘Obama’s’ when the second should be an ‘Osama’. In context, this matters!

apex May 1, 2011 at 11:48 pm

I think this is a story that will go away after a few weeks and will not matter. My reaction was a tired “finally”, like a TV show that has run too long. A lasting impact it will not have, and operationally, it will have been a non event as the organization has long carried on without Osama guiding it, him being mostly a figurehead for the last decade since his money ran out.

As for the republican nomination process, that one remains a wild card, but a lot of more extreme candidates were voted into the house last time around, and the message that the US is going to be broke soon is pretty well established. Reagan was considered extreme, too.

apex

nate May 1, 2011 at 11:49 pm

You wrote Obama instead of Osama.

DaveyNC May 1, 2011 at 11:49 pm

This doesn’t change anything; he was the favorite before this and he still is.

Lorenzo from Oz May 1, 2011 at 11:49 pm

Wow, the speed of the web. There were no comments when I started typing!

DaveyNC May 1, 2011 at 11:51 pm

Me, too, and I only wrote one sentence.

David May 1, 2011 at 11:51 pm

Obama will get a temporary bump in the polls but this won’t impact the election, which is 18 long months from now. Most people realize that this the result of intelligence work rather than anything Obama has done; he gets no more credit for this than Bush does for failure to get him (after all, it was Bush who said we’d get him “dead or alive,” to the discomfort of Obama’s base). His reelection hinges on the economy. Conservatives will stand in line to vote against him, he won’t be able to count on independents who now realize that he is farther to left than most Americans and certainly more than any president.

JC May 1, 2011 at 11:51 pm

OBAMA will (hopefully) get re-elected. OSAMA is important in the American mind (maybe, still).

Cameron May 1, 2011 at 11:51 pm

I think this makes it difficult for the Republicans to fight Obama on National Security issues. This takes away one of the stronger issues that the public trusts Republicans on.

My take is that Presidential elections are largly one or lost due to economic issues. If the economy does not take a turn for the worse Obama will be just fine and will win reelection regardless of this news.

Jamie May 1, 2011 at 11:51 pm

I think you mean “getting Osama”, not “getting Obama”.

julie May 1, 2011 at 11:52 pm

Obama!=Osama

Carolina May 1, 2011 at 11:52 pm

fix the typo quick! you put “getting Obama is way more important than Iraq or Saddam”. You mean get Osama.

Lorenzo from Oz May 1, 2011 at 11:53 pm

The economy is too poor and Obama’s approval trends are too low. As long as the Republicans nominate someone not utterly unelectable, the Republican [fill in blank] has to be favoured unless there is a major pick up in the economy.

Remember what happened to Bush Snr.

(I laughed when I read Gov. Perry’s comment that “if Jeb Bush’s name was Jeb Smith, he would be the next President’.)

AF May 1, 2011 at 11:53 pm

“getting Obama is way more important than Iraq or Saddam in the American mind”

oops

burger flipper May 1, 2011 at 11:53 pm

David Pinto is right. The average joe isn’t quite as dumb and emotional about this as you’d reckon. The election is gonna swing on the economy, not an Arab pelt.

Now let’s see if al Quida is anything more than a bogeyman and if anything blows up this week.

Terry May 1, 2011 at 11:53 pm

A Freudian slip? The second Obama should presumably be Osama.

Anonymous May 1, 2011 at 11:54 pm

Your Freudian slip is preserved on your blog’s RSS feed:

“My quick take is that that Obama will be re-elected (getting Obama is way more important than Iraq or Saddam in the American mind), at this point the Republicans won’t try to beat him from the center and will thus nominate a more extreme candidate and lose badly, and the most important effects will be on Pakistan, not this country.”

Z May 1, 2011 at 11:56 pm

Bush got a noticeably 5 point bump when they found Saddam, but it obviously never arrested the downward trend over the next 5 years. But I do agree Osama is a much bigger fish and a much bigger deal considering that Bush failed for 7 years to get it done…

Adam Smith May 1, 2011 at 11:57 pm

Geez it’s a one-letter typo. Put down the pitchforks.

My reaction was exactly the same as Tyler’s (though less nuanced). The 2012 election is in the bag barring some egregious embarrassment in Libya or tragic incident of retaliation at home.

Fletcher May 1, 2011 at 11:57 pm

I think that you need to revisit that parenthetical, but yes.

Evan May 1, 2011 at 11:57 pm

Obama will be re-elected (getting *Obama* is way more important than Iraq or Saddam…)

You might want to change that.

Buratino_vn May 1, 2011 at 11:59 pm

Did you mean “getting Osama is way more important than Iraq or Saddam in the American mind”? What a good time to make the news public!

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