Home 2012 races Barack Obama Launches 2012 Reelection Campaign with Video

Barack Obama Launches 2012 Reelection Campaign with Video


Not that it’s a big surprise or anything, but now it’s official — Barack Obama today is launching his 2012 reelection campaign. I watched this video and was struck by a few things — its slick production, of course; its images of people from key groups (white male, Latino, white female, young people) and key states (North Carolina, Nevada, Colorado) that Obama is going to need in large numbers in 2012; its focus on grassroots volunteering for Obama in 2012, but perhaps in a more sober way than the frenzy of 2008; its emphasis on the importance of winning this reelection and how much more there is left to do; its subtle acknowledgment that the intense excitement and historic nature of the 2008 campaign won’t be replicated in 2012; also, its subtle acknowledgment that Barack Obama now has a record as an incumbent, so of course we’re not going to agree with everything; its catch phrase, “It begins with us,” which is a different – and again, more sober, less “movement” feel – way of saying “yes we can.”

Clearly, President Obama’s 2012 reelection campaign can’t – and won’t try to – recreate 2008, which was an obvious “change” election from 8 years of George W. Bush and Republican (mis)rule.  However, to the extent the Obama campaign can do so, it will need to bring the coalition that came together in 2008 together once again in numbers close to those seen in 2008. Can the Obama campaign compensate for the passion and historic excitement of 2008 with discipline, organization, a record of accomplishment, a recovering economy (instead of a collapsing one in 2008), upwards of $1 billion, and possibly a very weak Republican candidate? That’s the challenge of 2012: whether “Yes we can!” can be translated into the more sedate “It begins with us.” We’re going to find out, starting now.

  • Today, we are filing papers to launch our 2012 campaign.

    We’re doing this now because the politics we believe in does not start with expensive TV ads or extravaganzas, but with you — with people organizing block-by-block, talking to neighbors, co-workers, and friends. And that kind of campaign takes time to build.

    So even though I’m focused on the job you elected me to do, and the race may not reach full speed for a year or more, the work of laying the foundation for our campaign must start today.

    We’ve always known that lasting change wouldn’t come quickly or easily. It never does. But as my administration and folks across the country fight to protect the progress we’ve made — and make more — we also need to begin mobilizing for 2012, long before the time comes for me to begin campaigning in earnest.

    As we take this step, I’d like to share a video that features some folks like you who are helping to lead the way on this journey. Please take a moment to watch:

    In the coming days, supporters like you will begin forging a new organization that we’ll build together in cities and towns across the country. And I’ll need you to help shape our plan as we create a campaign that’s farther reaching, more focused, and more innovative than anything we’ve built before.

    We’ll start by doing something unprecedented: coordinating millions of one-on-one conversations between supporters across every single state, reconnecting old friends, inspiring new ones to join the cause, and readying ourselves for next year’s fight.

    This will be my final campaign, at least as a candidate. But the cause of making a lasting difference for our families, our communities, and our country has never been about one person. And it will succeed only if we work together.

    There will be much more to come as the race unfolds. Today, simply let us know you’re in to help us begin, and then spread the word:


    Thank you,


  • Hugo Estrada

    And I see this as a problem. I should be.

    Let’s put this in context: I never really liked Clinton during his presidency, seeing him as leaning heavily to the right, but he did prevent many of the most radical agenda items from the 1994 GOP revolution. I really liked that, and when Clinton ran again, I felt happy.

    This time I don’t feel that happy. I think the biggest problems is that we don’t have any tangible successes to use. Many of the victories are abstract.

    We got the health care bill, but a lot of it won’t go into effect until much later, making it a fragile victory.

    The economy didn’t collapse completely, but younger people, who tend to vote Democratic, are living through unemployment rates that compare with the Great Depression.

    And the current climate of the budget negotiations, where the needs of the middle class are ignored in favor for budget cuts that will hurt the middle class, the recovery and the economy seem to come from an alternate universe.

    Also, many of the smaller victories are about to be fizzled through budget cuts, such as the government transparency initiatives.

    On top of that, the attacks on public education teachers and the sudden ease at which we are discussing reducing benefits for Social Security and Medicare just leaves me with a bad taste in my mouth. Even though it is hard to believe by following the current debate topics, Democrats STILL control two branches of the government.

    And the cherry on the sundae is the renewal of the tax cuts for millionaires. One of the biggest mistakes that cause our budget problems under Bush is now an Obama administration “achievement.” Just wait and see how the GOP will use this against Obama.

    Of course, Obama is still much better than any GOP candidate, so I will go ahead and vote for him. I will probably give some money, and even phone bank. But more out of obligation and fear of the GOP.

    And here is the problem: most candidates for the GOP are horrible, but once they get down to one, all of the racists and right-wing kooks are going to rally behind that person to get rid of Obama. The enthusiasm gap may be in their favor this time. Hopefully this lack of excitement is just me and not most Democrats.

  • Elaine in Roanoke

    The Obama campaign was smart enough to retain the structure of regional and local grassroots leaders by morphing Obama for America in to Organizing for America. The joint meetings of OFA and the DPVA that have been held all over Virginia in the past few weeks are something I personally haven’t seen in this state before – the Richmond party apparatus actually starting to work with others early.

    If the economy continues to improve, if the Republicans continue to have a cast of possible candidates that include the likes of Donald Trump, Michelle Bachman, and Sarah Palin, then things look pretty good.

  • Sora Dina

        I’m concerned about the GOP response. If I know that party they will do everything in their power to stop President Obama’s reelection bid and regain the White House. I believe the Tea Party is at the bottom of all the budget differences in Congress right now and they are stalling any efforts to come to a reasonable agreement over the serious budget differences between the two parties. Neither party wants to take the blame for a government shut down.

       Overall, I think President Obama has done his best to bring about the policy changes he campaigned for in 2008. However, the stubborn economy and slow growth in job creation may create some problems for President Obama’s reelection bid in 2012. I think any improvement in the economy from now until November 2012 will be a plus in his reelection bid. Time will tell.

       President Clinton was reelected in 1996 and he faced many of the same problems President Obama’s administration faces today. Unfortunately, President Obama inherited many more problems than President Clinton did when he took the oath of office in January 2009. I think that President Obama is still a very popular president and in spite of all the challenges he now faces he may be able to overcome the Republican 2012 challenges for a second term. I always felt that if he won a first term as President he would be able to repeat that victory again.