Killing Osama won’t help Obama in 2012

The Washington Times Weekly - - Editorials -

On “The View” on May 2, Bar­bara Wal­ters said, “I would hate now to be a Repub­li­can can­di­date think­ing of run­ning,” and Joy Be­har beamed, “Skip the next elec­tion.” The lib­eral me­dia’s best hopes aside, tak­ing down Osama bin Laden won’t guar­an­tee Barack Obama’s re-elec­tion in 2012.

Pres­i­dent Obama may en­joy a mo- men­tary bump in pub­lic ap­proval based on a wave of good feel­ing that re­cent his­tory’s great­est crim­i­nal is dead — but re­al­ity will set back in hard, and soon. Mr. Obama’s crush­ing na­tional debt hasn’t van­ished; gaso­line and food prices will con­tinue to soar.

All of the crit­i­cal do­mes­tic po­lit­i­cal prob­lems Mr. Obama faced be­fore the Navy SEALs showed up in Ab­bot­tabad are still there.

These are the pock­et­book is­sues that de­ter­mine how peo­ple vote.

Bin Laden’s death will put Mr. Obama in a na­tional-se­cu­rity quandary be­cause it will be harder to con­tinue to make the case for “over­seas con­tin­gency op­er­a­tions” now that the No. 1 con­tin­gency is gone.

The “war of ne­ces­sity” in Afghanistan will seem a lot less nec­es­sary. The strug­gle with ter­ror­ists will con­tinue, as will TSA grop­ing and other in­dig­ni­ties Amer­i­cans put up with in the post-Sept. 11 world.

But with bin Laden dead, the White House will be put in a po­si­tion of con­tin­u­ally hav­ing to ex­plain why the war — that they had re­fused to call a war un­til May 1, 2011 — isn’t over.

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