Many insiders within the Democratic Party have begun to worry that the grassroots movement to elect Russ Feingold President in 2012 is damaging to Barack Obama. They fret that a primary campaign by Feingold to wrest the Democratic nomination for President away from Obama could hurt Obama’s chances to retain the White House for a second term.
These concerns are missing an essential point: A Feingold for President campaign isn’t Barack Obama’s biggest problem. Barack Obama is Barack Obama’s biggest problem.
Obama gained the presidency because he gained the trust of the liberals that comprise the foundation of the Democratic Party. When Obama became President, however, he broke his promises to American liberals, and showed open disdain for their continuing idealism.
It’s like Josh Marshall says, defending the idea of a run by Feingold for the Democratic nomination:
“In most respects, I think that we’re talking about a confusion of causes and effects. Presidents who are politically wounded and/or leading fractured coalitions get primaried. Which is another way of stating that getting primaried is a symptom of weakness, not a cause.”
A Feingold for President campaign won’t make Barack Obama weak. Obama is already weak, and that’s what’s making a Feingold for President campaign such a strong possibility.