Dear Mr. President — My Message to Barack Obama
November 7, 2012
Dear Mr. President:
Congratulations on winning a second term.
You have been entrusted with the greatest privilege any American can be given. That is the honor of leading our nation.
Over the next four years, you will face many tough decisions. If there are doubts about which direction to go, I have a few words of advice: Remember the message that got you elected. Remember the things you stood for that won you 60 million votes, not just once — but twice. Remember the causes you championed out on the campaign trail that brought cheers from the crowds. Those were not conservative ideas. They were not even moderate ideas. For the most part, they were liberal ideas. That’s what got you elected, Mr. President — a second time.
Now, you have absolutely nothing to fear. Not from the pundits or the pollsters. Not from your political rivals. You will never have to run on your record again. Now, instead of a politician you can be a statesman — a leader. You can now do what in your heart you know to be right.
To many of us who voted for you the first time, your record was a bit of a disappointment. You ran from many of the political fights that desperately needed to be fought. At times, you abandoned the platform that won a landslide electoral victory. There were times that you and your administration seemed lost.
But now, we are giving you a second chance.
In 2008, we elected a man we hoped would be a truly transformational leader. We hoped for someone in the mold of a Thomas Jefferson or a Teddy Roosevelt or an FDR. Even Ronald Reagan was transformational — reshaping and redefining the role of government. We looked to you to reverse the decline of this nation and show America and the entire world that government can indeed lead the way, for both the private sector and for all citizens.
And now, you are getting a second chance.
Your second term begins with new hope. This is a rare opportunity. It will be a test. What you decide to do with the next four years is not important just to your legacy. It’s critical to this nation and generations of Americans who believe in progressive causes. We are sick of seeing corporations getting all the breaks. We are sick of witnessing the super rich getting richer, while middle and lower class people struggle. We are sick of wars and unnecessary foreign engagements when the real work needs to be done here at home.
You are getting a once in lifetime second chance, Mr. President.
Let me leave you with a few final thoughts, Mr. President. Keep the celebration short. This is not the time to party. Many people have lost hope. Cut back on the inauguration ball. Moreover — I don’t want to read about your basketball picks. I don’t want to see you appearing on The Tonight Show. I don’t want to see you entertaining celebrities at the White House. Governing is not Hollywood.
Mr President, I want to see you working. I want the light on in the oval office at midnight. I want you on the telephone strong-arming stubborn legislators. I want you putting pressure on members of the other party. I want you making odd alliances. I want you thinking way outside the box. I want you to lead. And, if they wont go along, I want you to fight. I want you to use the considerable talent you have as a communicator to sell your message to the American people. Opposition will dwindle, if you get enough support.
It’s all been done before, Mr. President. If you need a primer, use LBJ’s domestic policy (1965-1966) as a starting guide. He called his vision of a new America “The Great Society.” It’s now time for you to create an even greater society.
People will follow you, Mr. President. But, you must lead.
We will be watching, Mr. President. Please don’t let us down. The stakes are too high. America is counting on you.
Las Vegas, NV