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May 1, 2012

Sleazy Team Obama's Non-Stop, Class-Warfare Focused on the Wrong Accounts

Topics: Political News and commentaries

Jim Geraghty points to a recent report on how Americans view their retirement savings accounts -- IRAs, Roth IRAs, 401(k)s, etc.

  • Americans' confidence in their ability to retire comfortably is stagnant at historically low levels. Just 14 percent are very confident they will have enough money to live comfortably in retirement (statistically equivalent to the low of 13 percent measured in 2011 and 2009).
  • Employment insecurity looms large: 42 percent identify job uncertainty as the most pressing financial issue facing most Americans today.
  • Just 28 percent of Americans feel confident they will have employment as long as they need it.
  • 62 percent of workers consider their current level of debt a problem.
  • Only 66 percent say they and/or their spouses are saving for retirement, down from 75 percent in 2009.
  • Many workers report they have virtually no savings and investments. In total, 60 percent of workers report that the total value of their household's savings and investments, excluding the value of their primary home and any defined benefit plans, is less than $25,000.

However, to Team Obama, those low levels of Americans' savings and retirement accounts aren't considered worth discussing ... they prefer to focus on Mitt Romney's Swiss bank account along with their customary class-warfare:

As Geraghty aptly notes, Team Obama is essentially saying, 'Sure, the other guy's economic policies might create more prosperity ... but he's got a Swiss bank account, and that sounds vaguely sinister enough to not take the risk. It's Obama's way to build resentment towards Romney as a means to distract from his own failure to put voters back to work.

Then there's Timothy P. Carney's excellent point: Barack Obama is the wrong guy to be attacking someone for subsidizing overseas manufacturing and having a Swiss Bank account:

There is so much silly about Obama's new attack ad on Mitt Romney above -- I'll post about Obama subsidizing overseas manufacturing later -- but the attack on Romney's Swiss bank account is the dumbest part.

And, frankly, Obama isn't the type of guy I would expect to make a big deal about Swiss banks.

Consider that Obama appointed as IRS Chief Counsel William J. Wilkins, a former lobbyist for the Swiss Bankers Association (despite Obama's claims that he has "excluded lobbyists from policy making jobs"). Also, Obama's No. 2 White House aide, Mona Sutphen, has cashed out to Swiss Bank UBS.

Also, Obama's "new best friend," and golf and basketball buddy according to a 2011 New York Times article is Robert Wolf, CEO of UBS. Obama put Wolf on his Economic Advisory Board.

So if Swiss banks are somehow baaad, as Obama implies in his attack ad, which is worse: keeping some of your money in a Swiss bank, or being very cozy with the lobbyists and executives of Swiss banks?

And if you think Obama's non-stop campaigning and the negativity in his campaign is a bit sleazy, you're not alone. Dana Milbank, for example, is not only less than impressed with what he's seen so far, it's making him downright 'queasy':
The preezy of the United Steezy is making me queasy.

I'm not troubled by President Obama's slow jam with Jimmy Fallon, who dubbed the commander in chief "preezy" during Obama's appearance on late-night TV. No, preezy is making me queasy because his nonstop campaigning is looking, well, sleazy -- and his ad suggesting that Mitt Romney wouldn't have killed Osama bin Laden is just the beginning of it.

In a political culture that long ago surrendered to the permanent campaign, Obama has managed to take things to a whole new level. According to statistics compiled for a book to be published this summer, the president has already set a record for total first-term fundraisers -- 191 -- and that's only through March 6. Measured in terms of events that benefit his reelection bid, Obama's total (inflated in part by relaxed fundraising rules) exceeds the combined total of George W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George H.W. Bush, Ronald Reagan and Jimmy Carter.

It's not just the gatherings officially categorized as campaign events. To a greater extent than his predecessors, Obama has used the trappings of his office to promote his reelection prospects even while handling taxpayer-funded business.

As Ed Morrissey quips, it's gonna be a long summer, but there is at least one bright spot. If Obama is making Dana Milbank queasy with his over-the-top campaigning, he's probably turning off a lot more independents and moderate Democrats to an even greater degree.

Posted by Hyscience at May 1, 2012 10:57 AM

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