The man who could have saved us from Obama now regrets his punt
By Andrew Malcolm
Posted 09:00 AM ET
A Barack Obama Update: The good news is we have endured 1,729 days of this guy. The bad news is there are still 1,193 left.
His pettiness and lack of leadership helped produce and prolong a record duration of high unemployment, the worst economic 'recovery' in decades, record deficits, record national debt, a wasted trillion dollars in stimulus, record youth and black employment hardships, untold lies about the unfolding disaster called ObamaCare and Benghazi and so many other things.
The country's latest fiscal crisis continues this week as an arrogant incumbent president of the United States, who approached this crisis by playing more golf, leads his nation to the brink of an historic default, which he voted to have eight years ago, but now opposes.
We listed here the other day the public's guilty verdicts on Obama's feet-on-the-desk stewardship of the Oval Office and the bitter political, social and class divisions afoot, which he once promised to heal.
It didn't need to be this way.
We're reminded this week that, but for the business decision of one famous man, Obama's once rising star could have been blown out of the sky and the country saved years of anguish by an election defeat in 2004. That's when the ambitious ex-state legislator Obama sought and got the Democrat nomination for a U.S. Senate seat from Illinois.
With 70% of that November's vote, Obama crushed the Republican Party's last-minute sacrificial lamb, Alan Keyes, who had portrayed himself as a GOP primary presidential contender back in 2000 but was really just trying to jack his speaking fees with some free TV fame.
That's what people often remember.
What they often forget is Republicans came close that year to enlisting as their U.S. Senate candidate from Illinois the NFL Hall of Famer and Super Bowl Champion Player and Coach Mike Ditka. After an illustrious career as a belligerent tight end for Chicago, Philadelphia and Dallas, Ditka coached as a Cowboys assistant before becoming head coach of the Bears and, later, the New Orleans Saints.
Thanks to his TV commercials and iconic 'Saturday Night Live' skits where he was fondly labeled 'Da Coach,' Ditka gained national fame as an ESPN commentator and tough-talking, can-do, tell-it-like-it-is guy likely with some anger management issues.
In 2003, Sen. George Allen, namesake son of the legendary NFL coach, approached Ditka to be the party's nominee the next year. Ditka, who had described himself as "uber-conservative," subsequently said he considered the new career path for two days. But turned it down as an interference with business plans.
Speaking to a business group the other day, Ditka regretted his choice. "Biggest mistake I've ever made," said the coach. Which is saying something because Ditka relinquished the Saints' entire 1999 draft for one player, Heisman winner Ricky Williams.
"Not that I would have won," Ditka added, "but I probably would have and (Obama) wouldn't be in the White House."
Now there's a teeth-grinding thought.
Illinois is a notorious Democrat state and the media loved Obama even then, although Obama's old Senate seat is now held by Republican Mark Kirk. Ditka, who turns 74 on Friday, would have certainly done better than Keyes' 27%.
And Ditka would have certainly served Illinois longer than the uber-liberal Obama's blessedly brief 1,412 days.
Watching Obama and these old toads in Congress endlessly circle each other these days to no meaningful end, makes some of us daydream for a chair-kicking Ditka to shake up that out-of-touch senatorial somnolence. Someone there to cheer for, instead of shake our heads at.
And not too long ago Ditka provided evidence of his feelings on that and what he dislikes about Washington. "The hypocrisy, of both parties," he said."You're not there to represent a party, a special interest. You're there to represent America, the people that elected you. They don't do that. I'm sorry, they don't do it! And you can't make all these promises when you're a candidate and none of them happen."