If this struggling country has any hope of reversing the death slide which began over three decades ago, but which has escalated dangerously during the last ten years, it will require a strong, resolute president who will fight for all the American people.
Because Barack Obama is incapable or unwilling to take that leadership role, he owes it to the American people to step aside and let another Democrat run in 2012. That person needs to be a Democrat, because our system is set up so that only a candidate from one of the two major parties is electable. It is obvious that none of the Republican candidates comes even close to having any ideas that would benefit this country. And the prospect of a Republican president pushing an already activist ultra-conservative Supreme Court even farther to the right for an additional generation is almost too horrible to contemplate.
President Obama needs to declare as soon as possible that he will not seek a second term. He needs to help give another Democratic candidate a chance to build a viable presidential campaign.
The United States is in serious trouble. We need a progressive-thinking president to lead our country in the direction that so many of us hoped Barack Obama would have taken us. Since Obama will not be the one to do it, a fiery progressive Democrat must step forward, willing to take on the corporate elite and push for laws to help the middle class, workers, and other Americans slipping behind in this harsh economy.
There are potential candidates who spring to my mind: Howard Dean, Russ Feingold, Al Gore, and Hillary Clinton are established politicians who would draw followers; Van Jones, Alan Grayson and Bernie Sanders could fire up a lot of Obama's 2008 base. There are probably other potential candidates who, with the right kind of messaging and charisma, could draw a national following and mount a serious campaign.
In no way would it be easy to break away from an incumbent president and run for the highest office in the land next year. But it would be an opportunity and a challenge that is necessary and should not be passed up.
The way things are going, and based on the results we've seen already, the enormous problems confronting this once great nation will only get increasingly worse with a weak leader like Obama remaining in office. Undoubtedly he is a good man and would be a decent president in a different era. But as for being the leader America needs now, he is in way over his head.
It is time, and sooner rather than later, for Barack Obama to decline to run for a second term, and allow an opening for a progressive, non-corporatist candidate to step forward and mount a serious bid for the presidency and to change the course of history.