U.S. Representative Artur Davis seconded the nomination of Barack Obama for president in 2008 at the Democratic Party convention in Denver, Colorado. Now, almost four years later, Davis has left the Party of Obama, Pelosi and Schumer telling the Daily Caller that if he were to run for office again it would be as a Republican in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
In a letter by Davis announcing his switch, he attributes it to, “an agenda that would punish businesses and job creators with more taxes… I have taken issue with an administration that has lapsed into a bloc by bloc appeal to group grievances when the country is already too fractured.
“[F]aith institutions should not be compelled to violate their teachings because faith is a freedom.”
In Pennsylvania, a state that Obama must win to keep the presidency, his attack on the Roman Catholic Church has caused JoAnn Nardelli, the 1st Vice President of the Pennsylvania State Federation of Democratic Women, to leave the Democratic Party and endorse Mitt Romney’s candidacy. Nardelli became nationally known when she appeared on the cover of U.S. News and World Report going to church with Bob Casey, Jr. during his successful Senate bid against fellow Roman Catholic Rick Santorum in 2006.
The question which has to be giving the White House sleepless nights is whether these two defections are a harbinger of things to come?
The willingness of strong Obama ally Newark, N.J., Mayor Cory Booker to criticize the Obama campaign’s attack on capital investment, which was almost immediately backed by highly respected former Representative Harold Ford, Jr. show the fissure that is developing even amongst African American leaders against the President’s war on job creators and wealth.
The faith component is even more difficult political water for Obama. After being somewhat involuntarily outed on gay marriage by his Vice President, Obama was ill-prepared for the backlash that many African American pastors have warned may occur.
The Tennessean reports that the Rev. William Owens, founder and president of the Memphis-based Coalition of African-American Pastors, takes offense at the comparisons between homosexual rights and the civil rights movement of the 1960s, “I didn’t march for same-sex marriage, not one inch, one yard, or one mile.”
Some black pastors even predict that their congregations will “stay home” rather than vote this year.
Trouble in the black churches combined with the extraordinarily strong response by the Roman Catholic Church against Obama’s attempts to coerce their faith on reproductive issues has put Obama in a politically precarious position that has nothing to do with Jeremiah Wright or his own personal faith journey.
If Obama is to maintain his tenuous hold on the White House, he had better hope that faith voters who supported him in 2008 don’t feel the same way Jo Ann Nardelli does when she resigned the Democratic Party saying, “As the Democratic Party has taken the stand for same-sex marriage, then I must make a stand on my faith that marriage is between a man and a woman. God’s principles for life never change. His guidelines, given in Scripture, produce fruitful lives when you follow them.”
If people of faith who formerly supported Obama come to the same conclusion as Nardelli in states like Missouri, Pennsylvania, Wisconsin and Arizona, Obama cannot put a coalition together to win.
If African American pastors don’t encourage their congregations to get out and vote for Obama due to concerns of conscience, leading to lower turnouts in states like North Carolina and Virginia, Obama loses those two states he won in 2008.
If people of color like Artur Davis become disgusted by Obama’s political attacks on their future opportunities to improve their economic status without relying upon government largesse, 2012 could be a watershed election not seen in the country since Ronald Reagan’s election in 1980.
The irony of Obama’s predicament is that it is a completely self-inflicted political wound caused by hubris and a complete personal disconnect with the values that permeate Americans regardless of race.
Pollsters have always agreed that America is a center-right country, and it may turn out Obama’s one lasting legacy may be uniting the center-right against him and his intrusive federal government policies.
Somehow that is not what I think he meant, when he claimed to be a “uniter” in the 2008 election.