But only “provocative” seems to apply to his new gig as a political columnist. His latest scorcher claims, without a shred of evidence, that if President Barack Obama loses his re-election bid in November, it will be because of his race.
“Last time, there just weren’t enough reasons for enough white voters to vote against the black guy, as much as they wanted to,” Lupica claims “This time there are plenty. And please don’t believe a single poll on this issue.”
Here’s the first red flag.
He does address the economy, but only to parrot the line that it’s still President George W. Bush’s fault.
“Of course this election will be about the economy, and Obama’s record on it, no matter how much broad-daylight looting of this country went on during the eight years of Bush-Cheney,” he writes. “You want to know why George W. Bush is still the only living former President with an approval rating under 50 percent? It isn’t just because of all the Americans killed and wounded in a war built on lies in Iraq. It is also because of the economy Obama inherited from him, one nobody wanted to touch with a stick at the time.”
But he dismisses the economy as the real issue in the upcoming election. Instead, the real issue is race, he says.
Because he offers neither evidence nor logic to validate that claim, let’s look at both.
First, Obama’s poor showing in some southern states (Arkansas and Kentucky) has been attributed to racism. But Jay Cost of the Weekly Standard says historical evidence shows it’s due to a larger demographic trend.
“The real reason these people have bolted their ancestral political home has to do with the evolving shape of the Democratic party,” he says. “Historically, it was a working class coalition of urban workers and rural farmers.”
“Think of it this way: Your average Obama voter on the Upper West Side might think the ‘SmartCar’ is great, but a plumber working in Hot Springs would just laugh his you-know-what off if he saw a coworker drive up in one of those absurd vehicles,” Cost contends.
And in fact, Obama lost both those states to Hillary Clinton in 2008.
So much for evidence of racial bias. How about logic? Is it logical to think that after voting Obama in (over white candidates Clinton and John McCain), Americans would decide to “walk back” their hopes for a “post-racial” president?
If Americans were proud of themselves for electing Obama — as Lupica himself claims — why would they reject that?
No, the far more logical reasons Obama is struggling are clear: the economy, unemployment, verbal missteps and the lack of a second-term agenda.
Mike Lupica might want to go to the tape on this one.