November 3rd, 2009
02:48 PM ET

Dear President Obama #288: The only three things to watch in tonight's election

Reporter's Note: Presidents almost always have something riding on every election, and tonight will be no exception. But President Obama is a busy man; so I’ve made my daily letter into a viewing guide of sorts for the festivities.

[cnn-photo-caption image=http://i2.cdn.turner.com/cnn/2009/images/11/02/art.obama1102.gi.jpg caption="President Barack Obama warned Monday that more job losses should be expected in the months ahead."]

Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

Dear Mr. President,

If you are wondering about the pervasive smell of hair gel and makeup wafting around Capitol Hill today, it’s coming from the political punditry crowd preening and polishing for tonight’s big event. As you know, they get all lathered up over almost any kind of election, even one of these off-year Punch and Judy shows. I’m not that interested. Some folks will win, some others will lose, everyone will sit around those TV fern bars we call studios hashing out the meaning, and by midnight we’ll all lapse into comas. And tomorrow, it will be politics as usual.

So let me save some time for you. Here are the only things you need to watch for tonight.

1) A sudden and surprising rise of the Bull Moose Party. Sure they’ve been laying low since the early 1900’s, but you never know.

2) Ralph Nader. If you have any trouble with this one, give Al Gore a call. He’ll explain, but you might have to listen to a lot of cursing in the process.

3) And this is the serious one: You need to keep an eye on the degree to which voters, of all stripes, coalesce (and we all know how painful that can be!) against the issue of government spending.

Fiscal conservatives (to differentiate them from social conservatives) believe this is the Achilles’ heel of any candidate from either party who likes the idea of bigger government now. They are convinced voters, right, left and center, have grown so concerned about the soaring deficit and economic problems, that those voters will hammer anyone who openly supports more big spending. And this could be a problem for you, if that shows up in the vote tonight. You’ve seen the polls; voters like you, but time and again they have expressed substantial doubt about your leadership on the economy.

And trust me, no matter how much you trust your Democratic pals, in DC friends get scarce fast when they think there is a political bill coming due. Just something to keep on eye on. Call me if you want my read as the evening progresses. But not too late…uh, I’ll probably be watching a re-run of The Office. You want to come over?



Follow Tom on Twitter @tomforemancnn.

Find more of the Foreman Letters here.

soundoff (3 Responses)
  1. Conserve' for USA

    The government will find out just how people are feeling by these results today. If the dems win, the majority must think they are doing a good job. If anyone else wins, this will show them they need to "change" what they are doing.

    November 3, 2009 at 12:51 pm |
  2. Summerbax

    Love Jay-Leno. Put him back at 10:00 and put Ellen Degenerous at 9:00.

    It would be nice to see a women in the line up of prime time. Change is always at our finger tips.........................

    November 3, 2009 at 12:30 pm |
  3. meenas17

    Voting is ambiguous. A trusted friend can go against you. Well that is election. Freedom to vote,Liberty to ascertain the rights, sends one across.

    November 3, 2009 at 11:05 am |