“Sooner or later, your schtick will wear thin, in half empty halls.”

This classic song by Nardwuar The Human Serviette & The Evaporators is dedicated to President Obama.

He began his re-election campaign today in a half empty stadium in Ohio.

Mr. Obama’s advance team really screwed the pooch on this one.

The story is not his speech, or his campaign, but the empty seats.

It is a long way to November. But this is not a good omen for Mr. Obama.

“Sooner or later, your dream will crash, in half empty halls.”

27 thoughts on ““Sooner or later, your schtick will wear thin, in half empty halls.””

  1. My daughter (a 30-something) just looked at the pics of the hall, posted on Breitbart … according to her, he has so screwed the pooch. The venue is embarrassingly empty. I wonder how many of his following appearances will be in venues where he can count on a ‘voluntold’ audience to show up for the event.

  2. Watch – as the campaign progresses – how the MSM treats this I predict they will film the most filled areas – or the campaign managers will bunch everyone together – giving a different impression – unless you also pay attention to the new media ;-)

    @Sgt – you mean like union activists cheering like crazy – ;-)

  3. …and I’m also thinking – these students – some of his strongest supporters in 2008 – 50% of them are unemployed upon graduation – wonder what they think of all this “hope and change”

  4. I can make an educated guess that a re-elect campaign staff that is too large – more than 200 as of a month or so ago – is actually a huge administrative blunder. Karl Rove said at the same time in 04 his staff was less than 10.

    [Former Military] – when your staff is too large the principals and chief deputies are too busy being consumed with managing all these people and their need/demand to be relevant and part of the process. The principals and deputies can’t focus on goals, the incoherence and incompetence we have been seeing -this blunder, the Dog tales – are manifest symptoms of the overstaffed cause.

    I do hope they don’t read here, or realize yet their mistake. If they do realize it let’s hope they are now caught in their own web and realize the danger of firing a lot of immediately disgruntled people.

  5. “He began his re-election campaign today in a half empty stadium in Ohio.”

    When I saw the word stadium, I freaked out. Ohio Stadium, the home of the Big Ten Champion Football Buckeyes, has a capacity of 102,000. It is one of the biggest stadiums in the country. Even the lower bowl alone would hold more than 35,000 people.

    But, I went to:


    The picture shows the floor of the Value City Arena, home of the Big Ten, and NCAA East Regional, Champion Basketball Buckeyes. The Arena can hold up to 20,000, but, it is apparent from the picture that only the lower seating area is in use. According to the Arena’s web-site: “The lower-bowl alone can be configured specifically for shows with capacities from 2,000 to 7,000.”

    The picture shows the main floor as being less than fully occupied.

    On the other hand the Columbus Dispatch says that there were 14,000 people in attendance, but they also said:

    “But the event fell short of the 20,000 supporters the campaign had forecast as organizers moved people from seats to the arena floor in front of the dais to project fullness to television audiences. Obama volunteers had worked feverishly over the last week to gin up a crowd, making multiple calls to residents believed to be supportive of the president.”


    Columbus, is the capital of Ohio, and you might think that there were plenty of union goons to fill up those seats. The arena is on the Campus of The Ohio State University, the countries largest single campus, by number of students. OSU follows the same academic calendar that U of Chicago and Northwestern follow (although next year they will change to a semester calendar. Today however school was in full gear, exams are not scheduled for another 4 weeks, so there should have been plenty of students around. Although the afternoon was almost perfect spring weather with a temperature in the mid-70s and lots of sunshine.

    On Twitter, the Donk push back included claims the picture was taken very early in the day before the arena had a chance to fill up.

    “Air Force One, carrying the president and First Lady, arrived at Rickenbacker International Airport at about noon. They made their way to The Schottenstein Center, 555 Borror Dr., and Michelle took the podium first. She later introduced the president, and he took the podium at about 1:25 p.m.”


    The picture was posted on twitter at 1:23 pm. I could not find the ex-if info.

    Overall, I will go with less than 10,000, and they were not real happy about it.

  6. Mainstream news reports seem to all focus on the lower tier but you do get to see occasional flashes of empty seats up top. If you don’t know the arena seats 20k, the report of 14k sounds big. There’s no MSM effort to put the number in context.

    These people should be experienced enough to size a room so that it’s appropriate. They should have gotten a smaller venue as well, cancelled it and moved it here to accommodate the “overflow crowds”. A little organization and the exact same event with the exact same number of people would have been spun much more favorably.

  7. It would be very expensive and difficult to switch arenas mid stream. Security, personnel, and competing uses would make it difficult. At Ohio State, the old BBall arena St. John is across the highway from the new one. It only holds 12,000, but it is not air-conditioned. I would have been much easier to make VCA look full by pulling the stage forward and curtaining off the back half of the arena. I have been there for several music concerts where that was done. OTOH, Hussein’s people seem to have a thing about him having fans in the background when he is doing his performances.

  8. Breitbart.com probably did not doctor the photo. They probably took it before the event.

    The left wing has blogs, too – and they report a decent 14k of 18k capacity turnout. With video:

    As Obama aides mentioned, picking a fight about who draws better crowds doesn’t suit the Romney camp well. That’s Obama’s and Paul’s league. Romney is a near-total failure in this regard.

    Conclusion: Don’t draw info from partisan sources of one wing only. It’s too often bull.

  9. “As Obama aides mentioned, picking a fight about who draws better crowds doesn’t suit the Romney camp well. That’s Obama’s and Paul’s league. Romney is a near-total failure in this regard.”

    Romney is not even the official nominee yet, Mr SO, so I would suggest you are trying too hard. Obama, much as I hate to say it, is president and has the taxpayer to pay for his arrangements. We will see what happens in November.

  10. Friend – there was one event Biden went to a month/2 ago where there was less than 10 showing up. Now that has to be embarrassing!

  11. SO: read my analysis, above.

    Besides, there is nothing to argue about. Hussein was elected in 2008 because he was a “rock star”. If Hussein is not a rock star in 2012, it means he will not be able to count on doing what he did in 2008.

    The little girls who came around to my house in 2008, to explain why we needed to elect HIM, because HE is so brilliant and so wise, were not at his rally on Saturday. They were busy. They had to wash their hair. They had to do laundry. It was such a beautiful day, it seemed to be a shame to spend it in a musty old arena …

    Hussein will need plan B to be re-elected, because plan A — doing what he did in 2008 — won’t work. Of course in seeking a second term a President ought be able to count on the gratitude of the millions of citizens who his administration has helped in so many tangible ways. Maybe he has Plan C.

    Everybody knows that Mitt Romney is the straightest, most boring, white guy in human history. Ten minutes of Romney speaking = Ambien 5 mg. He is going to talk about budgets, taxes, regulations, entrepreneurship … broccoli. He will not be elected because of his charisma. He has none. He may be elected because he seems to be an executive who can get the ship of state under control, before it hits the rocks most of us see looming ahead.

  12. You’ve got Column A and Column B.

    In Column A, anyone with half a clue knows by now that Obama isn’t qualified to be president, that he has a reverse-Midas touch, that his “accomplishments” as listed by partisans are either illusory or destructive, that he isn’t competent to lead or manage his way out of a paper bag. He’s alienated millions including many of the moderate voters who elected him. His popularity is not what it was. The bloom is off his rose. His probable opponent has done well with left-leaning voters, and conservatives will vote for him by default.

    In Column B, Obama has the power of the presidency and no scruples. The big media do his bidding. He’s going all-out to pay off anyone who might vote for him. He has made clear that the federal govt will ignore voting fraud among his base. He has a lot more influence on the legal system than he did in 2008, and his people are probably working hard to figure out the most effective ways to manipulate the courts if the election is close. Romney is a weak candidate in many ways. Intrade, which has a very good track record on elections, says that Obama is the 60% favorite.

    Obama should lose but he may win. The kinds of arguments that appeal to the people commenting on this post won’t work on most of the people who will vote for him. If he wins it probably won’t be on his record and it may not matter if he can’t fill an auditorium. He’ll win on get-out-the-vote efforts paid for by us, on demagoguery broadcast by compliant media to distract from his record, on massive distributed voting fraud, and if necessary on illegal maneuvers to screw his opponents because he can get away with it. Romney may have the stones to call him on some of this stuff or he may not, and the Republican Party leadership are still cowed by their fear of being called racists. I really hope I am wrong about this stuff.

  13. There is no deep meaning. The surface meaning is that Obama’s campaign organization botched something that should have been easy. That means his organization is not what it should be. That may be significant. We will find out.

  14. The question is, ‘Are they so detached from the body politic that they think they should have filled the hall, or are we so detached as to attach some significance to this?

    November will tell….

  15. Jonathan: That about sums it up. The only thing I would add is that you have your known unkowns and your unknown unknowns.

    Any one of them could reshape the race.

    E.g. SCOTUS will rule on Obamacare. How will they rule? How will Hussein react?

    “Obama Warns Supremes: Don’t Overturn Healthcare Reform” by Ben Shapiro

    The Obama administration warned the Supreme Court this week via papers filed with the Court that if Obamacare is struck down, there will be an “extraordinary disruption” in Medicare. Medicare was not discussed during the Supreme Court arguments, since it was not a Constitutional issue. This is a practical argument, not a legal one; it’s the Obama administration applying pressure to the Supremes.

    My theory is that he is pushing them to see if they will react. If they rule against him, he will run against them. I doubt that is a wise strategy.

    Iran. It is safe to say that there is no one in the USG who has the vaguest idea what Iran is going to do. If they negotiate their bombs away, Hussein will be the big winner, and they might do that just to keep him in office, but I doubt it. If they test a bomb, Hussein is screwed. He has lost his bet. OTOH, Netanyahu just called for Knesset elections in September. I would wager that the Israel intelligence establishment thinks that nothing will happen in the next few months.

    I could go on like his for a while. I am a bit optimistic because Hussein seldom does the right thing in a crisis? But we shall see, and not until the fall. The election will not be fully engaged until Labor Day.

  16. Of course in seeking a second term a President ought be able to count on the gratitude of the millions of citizens who his administration has helped in so many tangible ways. Maybe he has Plan C.

    Do I detect just a bit of sarcasm? ;-)

  17. I would suggest voter fatigue as a possible culprit. Obama has been in Ohio so many times that he might qualify for residency. Seriously, people get pretty pissed about the traffic and headaches associated with a Presidential visit. I think many of the younger crowd found it cool to go the first half dozen times, but now they are just not that interested in another event.

    That doesn’t mean they won’t vote….

    People also have a hard time letting go of a losing position (like supporting Obama), as it seems to be a blow to their self esteem. This can be especially true for those who have less life experience.

    My big hope for this block of voters is low turnout. Praying for rain, sleet and snow.

  18. Can’t blame him. His out of town supporters’ electric buses needed hours to recharge and missed the show.

  19. Somebody must’ve said “We can’t open the campaign on Karl Marx’s birthday,” and someone else must’ve said, ” “.

    (i couldn’t think of anything, sorry!)

  20. Let’s see, there were 14,000 people in attendance for President Obama in Columbus, vs. 1200 in attendance for Mitt Romney in Detroit (which is not only a bigger metro area, but where he grew up). This is a strange point for the Romney campaign and the proprietors of this blog to crow about.

  21. Republicans would be advised to not gloat too much so far out from the election.

    But Obama supporters should see the folly of holding a rally in a hall that is too large for the crowd. It’s just poor planning and kills the energy at the event as well as results in bad pics. I can’t imagine anybody who’s worth their salary on the O campaign who would think that was a success.

  22. Obama will get 43% of the vote, even with ACORN vote-rigging. Romney will get 50%, maybe a shade less. There is no way Team Obama can work this into an electoral victory without it looking like an out right power grab. So be prepared for Obama to void the election results, declare Marshal Law, and remain President for Life.

  23. Of the nu,ber of attendees you have to wonder how many are the bussed-in activits union supporters vs the “Obama’s in town – lets go see him” variety….

    I have been around enough campaigns to know that there is a lot of the former…(the identical signs are a dead giveaway)

  24. All well and good….. but have you paid attention to the arenas and stadiums that Ron Paul has FILLED with blacks, whites, hispanics, the old and young alike? From Austin (TX) to Los Angeles (CA), people are responding to the message of fiscal discipline, restrained foreign involvement (not isolationism– see Switzerland, not North Korea for an example).




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