Time’s Joe Klein puts his finger on President Obama’s problem in an engrossing
essay “Encountering Anguish and Anxiety Across America:”
“Even among his most passionate supporters, Obama is something of a political mystery. He doesn’t challenge the Republicans; he doesn’t fight back; he doesn’t even tout his accomplishments….The Obama mystery is compounded by the president’s lack of visibility, and passion, on the No. 1 issue, by far, throughout the country: jobs.”
For all the self-serving ideological spinning about this election, it comes down to one thing: job worries and the sorry state of the economy.
The conservative Republicans who can barely wait to get their hands on the government they profess to hate believe that Tuesday’s vote will be ideological: a repudiation of government activism and an embrace of cut-taxes, cut-spending.
Worry not. They’ll soon overreach.
Progressives whine that Obama hasn’t pushed through enough reforms. Baloney. He’s pushed through more progressive change than any president since Lyndon Johnson. And the Republican drive to repeal those changes could end up alarming Americans.
Klein is right. Obama hasn’t convinced people he’s putting them – their jobs and their financial futures – first.
And he hasn’t reminded people about the source of this mess.
The Republican mantra seems to be that our economic crisis started January 20, 2009. They conveniently forget how Wall Street and big banks nearly wrecked us in the fall of 2008 – a crisis so severe that Bush Treasury Secretary Hank Kaufman literally got on his knees and begged Nancy Pelosi to help pass a bailout bill.
Their memory lapse may end up giving Obama another chance to do what Bill Clinton once promised to do: focus like a laser beam on the economy