Obama -- the president whose record doesn't matter

Forget it, Mitt. You don’t stand a chance.

David Letterman is against you. The gang on “The View” is unmovable. Polls show you’re behind everywhere. And get this — Americans predict in a landslide that you’ll lose tonight’s debate.

Wait, it gets worse. Michelle Obama’s chocolate-chip cookies beat wife Ann’s M&M concoction in Family Circle magazine’s bakeoff. M&M cookies? Whatever happened to good old Republican oatmeal cookies?

I thought that was the lowest blow. Then Woody Johnson, owner of the Jets, said your winning was more important than his team’s. He meant well, but the link was unfortunate.

It reminds us that you and the Jets excel only at disappointing. That you and Mark Sanchez look like you were made for your roles by central casting, until the game starts. Then it’s Katie bar the door!

You’re both always on defense. Even your offense is defensive. And don’t get me started on fumbles!

You know all this, right? I ask because your campaign said it was confident and not unhappy with its standing.


Even conceding the need for a happy face, that’s pretty dumb. It suggests you’re not playing to win, that you’re content to lose as long as it’s close.

Not to carry the football thing too far, but remember the wisdom of Vince Lombardi. He said show me a good loser, and I’ll show you a loser.

Are you a good loser, Mitt? Because if you are, Nov. 6 is going to be a landslide. You’re pulling about what John McCain did four years ago, and we know how that ended.

Yes, I know, polls are snapshots in time. And the celebrity stuff is fluff. But the belief that Obama is going to win is creating a momentum all its own. The strain of your defenders trying to spin the polls shows desperation.

Besides, the polls’ consistency should scare you. You never held a lead for more than a few days and rarely, if ever, hit the magical 50 percent. In the swing states, you are stuck in the 45-47 percent range — again, McCain territory.

Blame the polls all you like. Just be sure to look in the mirror, too.

Years ago, I believed Nebraska Democrat Bob Kerrey would be president. (He did become president — of The New School — but that’s not what I had in mind.)

I once asked him why he never made it to the Oval Office.

“You have to want it more than life itself,” he said. “And I didn’t.”

His comment revealed as much about those who make it as those who don’t.

Which brings us to Barack Obama. His behavior suggests he wants to win more than life itself. He’s turned over the government to David Axelrod and is making only those decisions that will help him. None of that is admirable, but it is a fact.

He gets to the first debate without uttering a single specific idea about a second term, except that he wants “millionaires and billionaires” to pay their “fair share” and will have “more flexibility” when he doesn’t have to face voters.

That’s it. Unemployment, the debt and deficit, the Mideast meltdown — none of it burdens him. He ducks the terrorist attack in Libya as just another day at the office and the mounting death toll in Afghanistan as not his problem.

He’s happiest in front of adoring crowds and hanging with fellow celebrities — he actually called Jay-Z and Beyoncé “role models.” He told Letterman he didn’t know what the debt was, yet Letterman makes fun of you.

With his lousy record, all this gas would doom any other incumbent. But Obama gets away with it because his appeal has little to do with his performance. Author Shelby Steele, writing last year, concluded that Obama “flatters America to a degree that no white Republican can hope to compete with” and that his election “validates the American democratic experiment.”

Steele warned that this “cultural charisma” gives the president an unspoken edge. Thanks to the polls, it is no longer unspoken.

There is talk that, no matter who is president, America will be at war with Iran in 2013 and there will be a global recession. But Alfred E. Neuman Obama isn’t worried.

You shouldn’t be either, Mitt. Because unless you’ve got lightning up your sleeve, they won’t be your problems.

Read the rest of Michael Goodwin's column here