Monday, September 11, 2006

Analysis: What impact will focusing on fighting terrorism have in the midterm elections?

WASHINGTON (CNN) -- President Bush told the American people Monday night that the country faces "a struggle for civilization" as it fights the war on terrorism sparked by the 9/11 attacks five years ago.

In an address from the Oval Office, the president stressed the necessity of victory, tying together conflicts from Afghanistan to Iraq to Lebanon as a "struggle between tyranny and freedom" that rivaled World War II.

"The war against this enemy is more than a military conflict. It is the decisive ideological struggle of the 21st century and the calling of our generation," he said. "Do we have the confidence to do in the Middle East what our fathers and grandfathers accomplished in Europe and Asia?" Bush asked.

"If we do not defeat these enemies now, we will leave our children to face a Middle East overrun by terrorist states and radical dictators armed with nuclear weapons," Bush said. "We are in a war that will set the course for this new century and determine the destiny of millions across the world."


"We are fighting to maintain the way of life enjoyed by free nations, and we are fighting for the possibility that good and decent people across the Middle East can raise up societies based on freedom and tolerance and personal dignity," Bush said. "By standing with democratic leaders and reformers, by giving voice to the hopes of decent men and women, we are offering a path away from radicalism."

19 comments:

BrandonSh said...

The president made it clear that his focal point right now is the Middle East. So midterm elections will probably be based on that topic. Also, democrats have apparently finally come up with a plan to remove troops from Iraq so I believe that we should all get ready to here nothing but arguments about the war on terror in the coming months.

Megan B said...

I agree with Brandon that, since the president has gotten public focus on fighting terror that we will HEAR about plans for this fighting constantly. Fighting terror should be a major focus when our country has men and women fighting on the front lines and dying for this cause. This is an area in which the congressional candidates must show they would like to, and be willing to, operate using majoritarian politics, in order to attract the attention of voters. Although, people may not know all the fact, and may not need to know all of the classified information that goes along with this topic, many feel that they do, and are sufficiently informed to make decisions. Everyone must also remember that President Bush, the commander in chief of the military, and supporter of taking a tough stance in foreign affairs, will still be in office after these elections and will hold that position until 2008. While many candidates will be focusing on the war on terror, I believe that smart politician and candidates will try to help themselves and elevate domestic issues to a similar point of prominence. The world today is too complex for a candidate running for such a large national position to primarily focus on one issue.

KimK said...

I think focusing on terrorism will end up encouraging more people to vote and get involved because most people have a strong opinion on the topic. Also, focusing on terrorism could end up needlessly detracting from the other important issues. Some people may support one candidate for their stance on the war on terror even though they don't like the candidate's other views. While terrorism should be a major issue in elections, perhaps it is given too much focus.

smWolfe said...

A big impact because the political parties will be emphasising their stance on terror which will persuade people to vote for a specific candidate. As as result of this the true colors of each party will show the direction in which they would like to take the country. The democrats will try to emphasis that the republicans are wasting U.S. tax dollars on a war they feel should be under control by such countries as Iraq and the republicans will be emphasising how safe the country has been since the war in Iraq and leaving it to soon will only create dismay throughout the world. So the U.S. voters will most likely be deciding on if we need to keep U.S. dollars here at home or if we need to make the world as safe and productive as the United States.

tonileep said...

I think that the impact on terrorism will have a big impact in the midterm elections. The issue on terrorism has been so huge and is the main focus. Everyone has a opinion on it and everyone wants to share their opinion. People are going to vote for the candidate that has their opinion on the issue and the candidates will share their opinion in their speeches. I agree with Kim that the huge impact on terrorism is too big of a focus. We should be focusing more on other issues that are affecting our country. However, the impact focusing on fighting terrorism is going to be huge in the midterm elections and we will constantly hear about it.

trevorhguy said...

There is already evidence that the war on terror is going to have a major effect on how the mid-term elections turn out. Even in the primaries it is playing a major role. Look at the race for Senate in Connecticut. A political unknown, Lamont, defeated Joe Lieberman, a long time incumbent and pro war member of the Senate, because he is strongly anti-war. I feel that this might be the trend for the rest of the nation in the mid-term elections in November.

MikeM said...

The war on Terror will undoubtedly have a big effect on midterm elections, just like it has on nearly every election since 9/11. Elections are always influenced by current events and this midterm election will be no different. If we are looking good in the war on terror before the midterm elections candidates that support the war will benefit and if were not looking so good then many candidates that are against the war will see increased poll numbers.

BrandonK said...

I think that the impact of terrorism is debatable for the midterm elections. If the President can put enough fear into the people, and get them to look away from Iraq, and at terrorism as a whole, the Republicans will have a greater reception. If the democrats can get the American people to focus on Iraq and not the spread of terrrorism, I believe the democrats will have a higher reception. The people need to understand that we are fighting in two wars, a war on terrorism and a war in Iraq (which by most accounts is going very badly). Either way it goes, I am sure we will be hearing a lot more about terrorism in the months to come.

Jahir D said...

Everyone knows that terrorism is a focal point on any campaign for political office. Though the war on terrorism is a very serious issue, many voters give it too much weight. Ignoring other perhaps more pressing issues such as the fate of social security, nationalized health care, abortion, and stem cell reasearch. This will affect the midterm elections a great deal because the candidates wont have to eleborate much on their stance on such controversial issues. Electing persons to office based mainly on what their views are on one particular subject will breed a generation of political leaders whose ideologies dont necessarily reflect those of the people.

RaStauss said...

i think it will have a large impact on the midterm elections because the U.S. wants action. I agree with Kim that it will distract from other issues within our own country, such as health care.I think we should start focusing on our own country more.

Dain said...

Again, I belive the primary impact is the distraction from other issues. The war on terror favors the Republicans while focusing on Iraq favors the Democrats.

However, the focus on terrorism will prevent the multitudes of other issues from seeing much time in the sun. These are not unimportant issues either, but things like the Gulf Coast, Patriot Act, Corruption, the Economy, Stem Cells, Gay Marriage, and Secret Prisons, just to name a few.

KimK said...

Just about everyone agrees that the war on terror will have a substantial impact on the midterm elections--however, I think that those elected based on their war opinions will not end up carrying them out anyways. Therefore, perhaps voters should pay closer attention to more changeable issues.

trevorhguy said...

I agree with what everyone has said about the impact of terrorism on the midterm elections. The president has brought the subject of terrorism front and center with the public and is focusing what seems like the majority of his time stressing on it. For instance, he just spent a week playing host to the Afghanistani and Pakistani presidents, both of who are major players in Bush’s war on terror. So, I feel that the public really doesn’t have a choice on what the hot button issues should be because all they see now is terrorism. It looks as though terrorism is going to be at the forefront during these midterm elections and will likely remain one of the main issues in 2008.

tonileep said...

The majority of responders have agreed that the war on terror will have a impact on the midterm elections. However, the candidates need to focus on other issues in order to get votes. People want to hear less about the war on terror and more about what the candidate will do for them as a whole. The candidates should stray away from the topic of war on terror if they want to have a chance to succeed. The war on terror is a huge topic and has a huge impact on all of our lives but we need to focus on other important topics that also have a huge impact on our lives.

KerryW said...

I agree with Toni. The candidates will focus a great deal on their views on fighting terrorism in the midterm elections. It's true. The thing is, that's not the only issue that they should discuss. They should also be discussing things that are equally important like gay marriage, if we should or should not be able to torture prisoners in Guantanamo Bay and listening to the candidates' views on stem cell research. These are all issues that effect many different people. They should be treated with as much thought and care as people are giving to the war on terrorism.

Dain said...

I agree with Kerry and Toni, but "Its the economy, stupid". Only this time around, the War on Terror is the new economy. A significant portion of voters care about Terrorism first, and the economy/ethics/stem cells/ect only after Terrorism has been addressed.

KimK said...

I don't think the issue of fighting terrorism had a very large impact in the midterm elections. I would have thought that if it did have a large impact, this would have assisted Republicans to win, which obviously didn't exactly happen.

brandong said...

I agree with Kim. If there was a big impact from The War on Terror the Republicans wouldn't have lost as many seats as they did. The war must not be that important to the American people anymore

KerryW said...

On the contrary, fighting terrorism did have an impact on the midterm elections because more people don't want to fight. This is what helped the democrats win the House. The democrats started to appeal more to the general public as an alternative to war. People are sick of the war and since we are still involved in the war on terrorism and in the war on Iraq with the republicans in control, people started to think that we need to get some new people with new ideas into the house and senate.