On asking Conservative MP Brooks Newmark about his initial reaction to the election outcome, his response is naturally one of disappointment, “for Romney and his supporters”.
With the debt ceiling rising and unemployment growing, Newmark considers other potential reasons behind the US’s continued support for President Obama, despite Romney’s business acumen and reputation. “I think America has some huge financial challenges out there. Even though [to] 80 per cent of people the economy was the most important thing, clearly there were other things that came into the mix in making their final decision. Debt has obviously gone up enormously; [it] is now around $16tn, heading towards $22tn. The deficit is still huge, unemployment is still hovering around 8 per cent. All these things should have pointed to a Romney win, given his background.”
“I think there are other things there that came into play, which will include demographic issues. If you look at the results, he did well with men and old people, but Obama did well, by quite a margin, [with] women, certainly an even larger margin on Hispanics and Asians and young people.”
Newmark admits the Obama administration shares certain foreign policy commitments with the UK; however, the self-proclaimed fiscal conservative queries the Obama administration’s ability to legislate with Republican dominance in the House of Representatives.
“On foreign policy I suspect we may well be on the same page; we have a similar agenda in pulling our troops out of Afghanistan. I think that hopefully we will be able to work together on the Iran issue [and] on the Syria issue.”
“The economic consequences are quite large. I have a feeling given the fact that the House of Representatives will be dominated by Republicans now you will get gridlock between the executive branch and the legislative branch. I think the risk is Obama will become, at least domestically, a lame duck president.”
When considering the future of the Republican Party, Newmark feels the party would be best served if they “sit down and digest the message of what they got there.” On the potential for Romney running for the Presidency in 2016, he believes it was perhaps too “emotionally and mentally exhausting both for him and his family” for this to be likely.
With Obama in his final term as President, when questioned about the prospect of him delivering on his election commitments, Newmark firmly states “he certainly didn’t do it in the past four years, so I doubt he will in the next four years.”