It’s down to the final three days before America’s votes are counted. And it's time for me to make my final prediction:
Gotcha! I'm not a betting woman, so I am not inclined to offer predictions. (But let me say, I think it’s very telling when the final hour is near and Fox News hasn’t started referring to Romney as “the 45th president” yet.)
Instead of pulling a handful of dry, dull reasons from a hat of who will be the winning horse come Tuesday, I spoke to Saginaw, MI Democratic Representative Stacy Erwin Oakes.
As you may recall from this article, Oakes posted an unusual campaign ad on YouTube earlier this week. This lucky writer was able to speak with Oakes and further explore the making of that video as well as her thoughts on the fast- approaching election.
A short word about the video: Oakes collaborates with a local hip- hop artist, and has created a series of these videos, all of which can be found on YouTube.
"I discuss the political landscape with him and he creates the music. He also created the video in 2010," Oakes said.
Oakes finds the music effective in reaching out to her district’s constituents. Seventy-five percent of Oakes’s district covers the city of Saginaw. Saginaw the largest urban area in its county and, like neighboring Flint, is in transition away from its manufacturing past.
Oakes' presidential prediction: One of the better lines from the Oakes video — in my opinion — goes “Obama, Obama, Obama, Obama, Obama, Oh-MA!” So, of course, Oakes predicts a win for the come-from-behind candidate, Congressman Ron Paul.
Just kidding, Oakes predicts another four years with President Obama
“I believe that based on [Obama’s] record alone that most people will find that he’s suited for his position,” Oakes said. “Things are getting better. We are moving forward and President Obama is the best person to continue to move the country forward.”
I had pointed out a couple of days ago that Romney fails to connect with the average voter. Many point to his money as the source of this disconnect, but, unlike the John Edwards, it isn’t the $300 haircuts that sticks a bee in the American people’s bonnet.
Oakes points to a telling moment when Romney responded to an Ohio student asking the former governor how to start a business.
"He said ‘Go ask your parents’ [if you needed money to start a business]," said Oakes. "If I asked my parents that I would probably make them homeless."
Politically, I couldn’t be more different than Oakes, but I have to say I agree wholeheartedly. This is a revealing statement; Romney’s biggest flaw— something he has not overcome, and it is far, far to late too attempt to overcome — is that he’s a good man with a lot of good ideas who has lived insulated from harsh realities.
There is no doubt in my mind that Romney is a qualified and formidable candidate. In fact, looking back I think we’ll see he has stirred up a degree of intellectualism that’s been vacant from presidential campaigns for the last decade. And yet, it’s a political pitfall.
I dare you to listen to the next edition of C-SPAN’s Washington Journal. While I can’t always vouch for the credibility of the call-in remarks, I have noticed something: Democrats make better points.
It isn’t necessarily because they are right. It’s because they understand to a coherent extent (at minimum) what it is they are arguing for. Republicans often get themselves bogged down with dense ideas and complex systems, and end up making no sense at all.
Think of it this way: Obama is out there handing out the readers digest version of politics, meanwhile Romney is out there, stumping from city to city giving a spirited lecture to a population, that by and large, hasn’t read the textbook.
Latest presidential poll from Michigan: Fox News has Obama and Romney in a dead heat, at 46%.