Could Obama’s October surprise be his manipulation of the Ebola crisis to his advantage?
“God made man to go by motives, and he will not go without them, any more than a boat without steam or a balloon without gas.” – Henry Ward Beecher
The news is running fast, and furious with the Ebola crisis, and with all the balls in the air at once, it can be difficult to see what’s behind the frenzy. Once again, I’m back to the motivation well. Watching president Obama’s navigation of the Ebola crisis had me perplexed for quite some time. I first suspected that his absolute refusal to initiate a travel ban from West African countries affected by the disease was about political correctness, about appearances–and I still believe that is true to a certain extent–but I now understand that his staunch refusal has much more to do with November 4ththan it does with political correctness, and cultural sensitivity.
Whether Debbie Wasserman-Shultz likes it or not, Obama’s approval is inextricably tied to Democratic senatorial candidates. That’s the way these things work; the successes, and failures of the leader of a Party is reflected upon his colleagues. Many Democratic senatorial candidates share Obama’s views, and platforms, and therefore are viewed as extensions of him. Given that, with Obama’s approval flatlining–even in spite of breathless help from his media lovers–things aren’t looking good for the Democrats to hold the Senate. Obama needed a strategy to not only make himself look good, but to paint his opposition in a negative light, and he has found it in the Ebola crisis.
First, to quell the anger of the masses, Obama has appointed a useless “Ebola czar.” This czar has no experience with Ebola, nor does he have any medical expertise at all. This czar has so far missed two official meetings regarding the outbreak (the thing he is supposed to be in charge of managing now).
According to Breitbart news:
“Ron Klain, the newly-appointed ‘Ebola Czar’ for Barack Obama’s administration, did not attend a White House meeting Friday discussing the federal response to the domestic threat of the deadly Ebola virus.”
And from Matthew Boyle of Breitbart (emphasis my own):
“President Barack Obama’s new Ebola ‘czar’ Ron Klain has skipped another White House meeting on the Ebola crisis, a readout of who attended aSaturday meeting with Obama shows.”
The appointment of this czar is simply a means to keep people under control. His appointment is designed to make it appear as though the president is on the offensive regarding Ebola, and that he is in tune with the current state of things.
Second, Obama has repeatedly refused to initiate a travel ban on countries where Ebola is affecting large numbers of people. I initially attributed this refusal to political correctness, but there is another, more plausible reason behind it: Obama needs to make it look like Republicans are purposefully frightening the American people so that they may win the Senate on November 4th. Obama seems to be calmly dealing with the crisis by appointing someone to manage the operation, and by repeatedly reassuring the American people that he has the situation under control. On the other hand, by refusing a travel ban, he is implying that the crisis isn’t as dangerous as it actually is. He is effectively saying that anyone who would demand a travel ban is overreacting in order to promote fear, and that those “fear-mongers” are only inciting panic to sway the election their way. Those alleged fear-mongers just so happen to be Republicans, and conservatives.
Could Obama’s October surprise be his manipulation of the Ebola crisis to his advantage? I believe it is. Obama needs the Democrats to control the Senate, and as it stands, that looks like a pipe dream. But by crafting a narrative in which Republicans are wrongfully frightening the American people with the notion of an Ebola outbreak, he has a chance to change the game, winning the election for the Democrats.
It’s a fine line to walk, but one he is expertly walking. I can only hope it doesn’t work.