President Obama is an attractive, well-meaning fellow. He appears to be a wonderful husband and father; he lives comfortably with his mother-in-law, which speaks volumes about his temperament. His personal life seems above reproach and vice-free; his fondness for cigarettes is humanizing and thus sort of winning.

That said, Mr. Obama must go. He is absolutely the wrong man to occupy the White House at this time. He aspires to grandiosity, but we cannot afford grandiosity. He yearns to even the scales but we need to balance the scales. He pushes to redistribute our income, but we need to produce more income. He lectures while we need inspiration.

Republican candidates hoping to unseat Mr. Obama in 2012 stepped out in Iowa last week, raising their hands and heads for attention. They come in various shapes and sizes; they have less or more experience, and brighter or duller credentials.

Here’s what they have in common: any one of them would likely do a better job than the current occupant of the White House. Any one of them could more intelligently create jobs, bolster the confidence of our small business owners, articulate the common sense needs and fears of the nation’s majority and stand tall for the values that shaped this nation.

I’m not talking about gay marriage, or abortion rights or any of the “social issues” that Mitch Daniels wisely advised tabling in this election cycle. I’m talking about the ability to aspire and to prosper, to work hard and invest for your children’s future, to create a better world for those who will come next. Only if most Americans succeed will we care for those in need. Only if we continue to offer the world a culture that celebrates achievement will those with ambition and resources continue to clamber for admission.

Here’s my candidate in 2012: anyone but Obama. The president is damaging the country, growing the apparatus of government like a frenzied gardener over-fertilizing honeysuckle. Once in place, the committees and panels and agencies and czars become entrenched – almost impossible to remove. Four more years could make permanent the rents in our nation’s fabric.

Americans elected Mr. Obama in hopes that he would narrow our differences and help to heal a divided people. He has instead driven us apart, lashing out at one group after another as he pushes for political advantage. Americans are angry and alarmed; this is no time to pit one group against another.

At a time when our country desperately needs to out-gun our rivals in the global marketplace, the White House ensnares our industries with cumbersome and costly regulations.

When we need a pragmatic reordering of our spending, Mr. Obama embraces follies: billion-dollar high speed trains to nowhere and windmills that will drive up our energy costs.

As we confront an ever more uncertain Middle East, the White House dithers over domestic energy supplies.

At a moment when our entitlements programs threaten our fiscal future, President Obama insists on expanding our safety net. As the entire nation worries about sky-rocketing healthcare costs, the president guarantees the upward trajectory by funneling 30 million more patients into our groaning hospitals and waiting rooms.

Primary season approaches, and GOP contenders will be battling it out for the chance to run against Mr. Obama in 2012. The candidates will adopt positions that curry favor with one interest group or another, and will inevitably lose support along the campaign trail. They will be bruised by the process. The liberal media will be on the attack, challenging their humanity and casting doubt on their intelligence or their religion. They will belittle their abilities and backgrounds, casting success as something Americans should shun.

Don’t be fooled. Every one of the candidates vying for the nomination has stronger credentials than 2008 candidate Obama. More important, each has a profound belief in the unique blessing that is our land of opportunity. Each understands the great promise of our democracy, and also its limitations.

This is a pivotal moment in our country’s future. We cannot afford four more years of President Obama.

Liz Peek is a FoxNews.com contributor and financial columnist who writes for The Fiscal Times. For more visit LizPeek.com.