First, life cycles. People believe what they believe for a lifetime. It’s why a set of political assumptions, what I have called a Political Thesis, can hold people even after it no longer works. The Nixon Thesis of Conflict stopped working under George W. Bush, so Barack Obama was elected.
Obama was a Reaganesque figure at a time that called for someone who was more like Nixon. We needed someone who knew their enemies and would be ruthless against them. We should have nominated Hillary Clinton in 2008. Obama was too passive in the face of obstruction, too complex as people came to demand simple answers. He will be judged a failure until someone else makes him a success.