2012 election: The race to the White House and the Osama effect

After the euphoria of Sunday evening’s announcement that the U.S. had finally got its man, pundits were yesterday wondering how the news would affect the country’s political dynamic.

So long as the story dominates the news cycle — and yesterday’s wall-to-wall coverage showed no sign of abating — people aren’t concentrating on downers like gas prices and a stagnant economy

The biggest political question is how bin Laden’s death will affect President Barack Obama’s 2012 re-election bid.

One Democratic consultant, Maurice Floyd, who has worked on numerous campaigns and is based in Philadelphia, believes this is a big win for Obama.

“This is a big feather in his hat. Without question his ratings will go up,” Floyd said. “I think this positions him in real good shape for next year.”

But another Democratic consultant, Dusty Trice, isn’t so sure this undoubted momentum will carry into next year. He said the story will be “dissected and put back together” countless times in the near future, but says that it will affect the outcome of the 2012 election “minimally.”

“You have one terrorist down. It does not necessarily end the whole operational outlook. In 2012, the deciding factors are going to be how we are doing economically and oil prices,” Trice said.

The effects we are currently seeing in the aftermath of bin Laden’s death cannot be ignored. The state of the country yesterday was hopeful with stocks rising slightly, initially, and America’s No. 1 enemy being buried at sea.

“The country has come together on this. Everyone cheered and celebrated as one. It brought closure to an episode of history in our lives,” Floyd said.

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