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'Fear and Loathing'

7:49 AM, Mar 16, 2012 • By DANIEL HALPER
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Matt Continetti, writing at the Washington Free Beacon:

tws-F-obama frown.08

"Barack Obama is now the candidate of fear. The press is so occupied by the Republican horserace that it has missed one of the biggest stories of the age: the Obama team’s adoption of tactics that the president would have ruled out as 'politics as usual' only four years ago. The shift is born of necessity. Despite holding fundraisers at twice the rate of his predecessor, the Obama campaign’s high burn rate has left the president with less cash on hand than Bush had at this point in the 2004 cycle. These money troubles spurred the president’s hypocritical decision last month to support outright the Priorities USA super PAC. But even Obama’s endorsement has not been enough to energize Democratic donors. Priorities USA raised only $2 million in the month of February, half of which came from self-described 'comedian' Bill Maher.

"Obama’s tepid fundraising reveals a Democratic donor base torn between disillusionment and apathy. Some wealthy liberals, living contentedly in la-la land, are holding back money because they believe Obama has not been left-wing enough, especially on the issue of climate change. (An extremely witty Huffington Post video illustrates the liberal disaffection well.) Others have seen the mainstream media coverage of the Republican primary and concluded, not entirely without reason, that the GOP is no threat at all. Why write a check, then, when the president is a lock?

"But the president is not a lock—and he knows it. ... The more closely a polling sample reflects the likely electorate this November, the worse Obama fares.

"That is why he and his advisers have reverted to classic machine politics in an attempt to excite their donor base. Tactics include offering patronage positions to well-heeled supporters, rewarding at least 47 bundlers with an invitation to a state dinner, and of course the oldest trick in the book: attempting to scare the bejeezus out of people. Hope and change? Try fear and loathing."

Whole thing here.

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