Obama’s post-partisanship

I think one of the thing that so frustrates liberals about Obama is his insistence at seemingly all costs of appearing above the partisan fray.  This ultimately leads him to the exact same false equivalencies that are so frustrating when they come from journalists.  You’d think that the de facto head of the Democratic party, though, could be a little more honest with what’s actually going on.  The latest EJ Dionne:

But the trend on the president’s numbers has been downward, and the Republicans seem willing to pay a high price to keep them moving that way. Remember: The core GOP argument is that government can’t do much good and generally makes everyone’s life worse. Democrats are the ones who insist that government can solve problems and improve people’s lives. If government isn’t doing that — if it is discredited and made to look foolish — guess whose side of the debate is weakened?…

“My attitude is that my job is to present the best plans possible,” Obama said in an interview Tuesday with talk-show host Tom Joyner. “Congress needs to act. If Congress does not act [emphasis mine], then I’m going to be going on the road and talking to folks, and this next election very well may end up being a referendum on whose vision of America is better.”

Obama hates to bring up the nasty fact that we have political parties, but very soon, he will have to point out that it is Republicans in Congress who are blocking his agenda. They will either have to start worrying about their low ratings or begin to pay a real price for obstruction.

Seriously, even now, he’s pretending that this is a “Congress” problem?  Uggh!  Not long after reading EJ’s column, I saw this status update from a FB friend who is also a PS prof:

Just got an email from President Obama – in it he referenced his frustration with Congress. Not the House. Not the Republicans. But Congress. I thought this was interesting. The email framed his need for my support as an us versus them situation. He highlighted frustration with Congress and their need to do something on behalf of the American people. What do you think about this approach? Will it work?

Well, you know what I think.  Pretend as he might, the “them” is not Congress, it’s the Republicans.  Damnit.  I certainly appreciate that he’s trying to appeal to Independent voters, but I’m not sure there’s any evidence they fall for this crap.  Be strong!

About Steve Greene
Professor of Political Science at NC State http://faculty.chass.ncsu.edu/shgreene

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