Politico’s Roger Simon writes that because of the death of bin Laden “the Republican field has been fried like an egg.” He adds that Obama has created an image of “a competent, cool, skilled, experienced, capable leader of this country.” Plus he “rescued the economy, saved the auto industry, expanded health care to millions of children, passed health care reform for everybody, repealed the ban on gay men and women serving openly in the military and eased the restrictions on stem cell research. And, oh, yeah, he found and killed Osama bin Laden.” So is Obama invincible then? Simon concludes: “He has vulnerabilities. He is going to have to defend a four-year record. And the economy could tank. Even further. The Republicans could beat this guy. All they have to do is find someone to do it. They have to find a candidate who is smart, gutsy, nimble, creative, credible, determined and capable of raising vast sums of money. Give me a minute, and I’ll try to come up with a name.”
A new Quinnipiac two-day poll after bin Laden’s death shows President Obama with a six-point bounce, up to 52%, his highest in almost two years in that poll. The movement was all with men. They went from 39%-54% disapprove to 51%-42% approve. There was no movement with women; in fact, his approval ticked down a point with them. Obama’s approval on the economy is still a 19-point net-negative, 38%-57%, which is essentially unchanged.
Many Americans took to the streets to celebrate the death of Osama bin Laden. “But amid such displays, and as President Obama prepares to visit New York today to lay a wreath at ground zero and meet with victims’ families, clergy and theologians are debating public shows of triumph. Many doubt it is wise — or right — to exult over any death. Even within religions, there is disagreement over what the ideal response to an evildoer’s demise should be,” the Boston Globe reports.
“President Obama ruled out publicly releasing photographs of the deceased Osama bin Laden on Wednesday, and White House officials said they would give no new details about the raid on his compound in Pakistan, an information clampdown that followed fitful attempts to craft a riveting narrative about the killing of al-Qaeda’s leader,” the Washington Post writes.
The Boston Globe’s editorial page says Obama should have released the photos of bin Laden’s death: “Even in a situation like this one, with a reasonable degree of concern that the bloody photos would rile up some of bin Laden’s followers, the government shouldn’t regard secrecy as its default position: Close calls should go in favor of openness.”
The New York Daily News’ cover: “No photo finish.”
Sour grapes? “George W. Bush won't be at Ground Zero with President Obama Thursday in part because he feels his team is getting short shrift in the decade-long manhunt for Osama Bin Laden,” the New York Daily News’ DeFrank reports. “‘[Bush] viewed this as an Obama victory lap,’ a highly-placed source told the Daily News Wednesday… ‘He doesn't feel personally snubbed and appreciates the invitation, but Obama's claiming all the credit and a lot of other people deserve some of it,’ the source added. ‘Obama gave no credit whatsoever to the intelligence infrastructure the Bush administration set up that is being hailed from the left and right as setting in motion the operation that got Bin Laden. It rubbed Bush the wrong way."
“President Obama will meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu at the White House later this month as the two attempt to improve their sometimes fractious relationship,” The Hill reports. “President Obama will visit Fort Campbell in Kentucky on Friday to address service members returning from Afghanistan,” The Hill adds. And: “Big-dollar donors in Washington, D.C., are being asked to open their wallets for President Barack Obama on May 16,” Roll Call writes.