Obama's Forgotten Base (plus, new episodes of the Breakdown!)

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Christopher Hayes

Sep 23, 2010, 2:46:56 PM9/23/10
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After a summer respite from my column to work on my book, I'm back writing Capitolism. This week's column looks at attitudes and beliefs of the portion of the electorate you might call the "anti tea party" young, black and low income voters.

Here's an excerpt:

That is the tragic and perilous irony of this political moment: the people with the most faith in the president and the Democratic Party are the hardest hit by the continuing economic disaster; it's this brute fact that's driving the so-called enthusiasm gap between liberals and conservatives. More than frustration with the lack of a public option or anger at a White House that seems to relish insulting the "professional left," the flagging enthusiasm among Obama's '08 base is the product of a kind of cognitive dissonance between hope and reality. "Like a lot of people in my generation, I was really inspired by you and by your campaign and message that you brought," a 30-year-old law school graduate told the president during a live town hall on CNBC recently. "And that inspiration is dying away. It feels like the American Dream is not attainable to a lot of us.... I really want to know, is the American Dream dead for me?"

Also, we've got new episodes of the Breakdown up here. The most recent is about the fate of the START Treaty that mandates nuclear weapon reductions between the US and Russia. You can subscribe to The Breakdown here.

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