Ken Blackwell

Even Democrats are beginning to yell “incompetence!” And it’s a nightly refrain on FOX News. Certainly we are seeing signs of incompetence in the deplorable VA scandal. And the rollout of ObamaCare was a world-class case of “glitch.” Inquiring minds are still asking what became of a half billion dollar investment in Solyndra. That “green energy” company went belly up. The fact that many of its organizers were Obama contributors should not attract any congressional oversight, of course. Nothing to see here, folks, just move on (dot org).

The other administration woes—from Fast & Furious to Benghazi are even more troubling. A proper investigation may tell us whether or not vets died awaiting care at VA hospitals. But we already know that Americans died because of administration missteps in Mexico and Libya.

So, for those inclined to yell INCOMPETENCE, there is plenty to yell about. Still, it might be wise to pause and reflect: Is competence really the winning issue that some pundits think it is?

The 2012 campaign for president was run largely on the basis of executive competence. Candidate Mitt Romney was famous for his start-up of Bain Capital, for rescuing the 2002 Winter Olympics, and for running a taut ship as Governor of Massachusetts. He may have stumbled with Joe Sixpack when he said he “liked to fire people” who don’t perform, but there was an aura of quiet competence circling all the bright young folks who rallied to Mitt’s campaign apparat.

Most impressive, perhaps, was their high-tech plan for voter turnout. After all, voter turnout is everything in politics. Long before Abraham Lincoln stepped on the debate platform with Democrat Stephen Douglas, Lincoln the Whig politico was giving campaign workers lessons in turning out the vote for his party in Illinois.

Team Romney promised a state-of-the-art computer-driven voter turnout effort that would be far more advanced than anything seen before. They called their plan Project ORCA. It was a humorous dig at the Obama turnout effort. The president’s team called their computer program Narwhal.

Ken Blackwell

Ken Blackwell, a contributing editor at, is a senior fellow at the Family Research Council and the American Civil Rights Union and is on the board of the Becket Fund for Religious Liberty. He is the co-author of the bestseller The Blueprint: Obama’s Plan to Subvert the Constitution and Build an Imperial Presidency, on sale in bookstores everywhere..
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