When President Obama uttered his "it worked" appraisal in California a few weeks back, I argued that Republicans should pounce. The ads, it seemed, would write themselves. The RNC shoots and scores with a new spot, scheduled to air in swing states:
They chose to go with the number of unemployed Americans and the disturbing spike in food stamp usage. They could have used the dreadful growth numbers, or dropping median household incomes, or the accelerating costs of healthcare, or exploding poverty, or... In any case, the result is an Obama who looks hopelessly out of touch. The Contexters will come out of the woodwork to argue that the clip of Obama is taken "out of context;" that when he said "our plan," he was really talking about the Bill Clinton plan he had nothing to do with. I dealt with the "context" question in great detail when it was first raised. The biggest takeaway is this: If you believe that Obama's words are being taken out of context -- I think it's unclear at best -- you're tacitly admitting that Obama's economically plan hasn't worked. If Obama's programs had been a roaring success, not a single Democrat would object to the GOP interpretation of "it worked" because it would be assigning credit, not highlighting failure. Another new ad from Reince Priebus' organization asks voters a series of hypothetical questions about Obama's priorities in office:
This one is a softer sell, and doesn't feel quite as impactful to me. But I like that it advances the important "he focused on Obamacare, rather than jobs" argument.