The common wisdom among the punditocracy is that the Federal Reserve’s announcement of its new, open-ended bond-buying program will provide a big boost to President Obama’s reelection by juicing the stock market and economy.
Actually, however, the Fed’s monetary move could give a huge messaging boost to Mitt Romney if his campaign plays it right.
Imagine this speech by the Republican nominee:
President Obama and his fellow Democrats spent their convention down in Charlotte trying to persuade voters that the U.S. economy is on the right track, that the president’s policies are working, that no president could have done a better job with the mess he inherited, that all that could be done has been done by this administration, that we must stay the course.
But yesterday, Federal Reserve Chairman Ben Bernanke finally admitted what most folks outside Washington already knew: The economy, three years into a supposed recovery, remains in terrible shape and is unlikely to get much better anytime soon.
In fact, Bernanke said there’s such little hope for improvement that he and the Fed are going to embark on a radical new experiment in money printing in order to try and do something, anything, to boost growth and create jobs.
In short, the Fed chairman’s move clearly suggested Obamanomics isn’t working today and is unlikely to work any better tomorrow. We cannot stay the course. And since Washington won’t act, he will.