1. Obama and his generals
This election year, Democrats finally owned national security for the first time in decades. It began with the 2011 Osama bin Laden raid, sure, but the cement began to set after President Obama rewrote the national security strategy and built a new defense budget to heed the Budget Control Act with close buy-in from top brass. Obama delivered the plan at the Pentagon in January, flanked by the joint chiefs. The result: Republican attacks from Mitt Romney, Rep. Paul Ryan (R-OH), Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) trying to put daylight between the president and the Pentagon fell flat. If there was any doubt before, Obama is commander in chief.