Jonah Goldberg

Remember that great scene from the Oscar-robbed classic "The Blues Brothers"? Jake and Elwood (John Belushi and Dan Akroyd) are finally cornered by Jake's former fiancée (Carrie Fisher). Jake left her at the altar with 300 guests and the best Romanian caterers in the state waiting.

"You betrayed me!" she exclaims.

"No I didn't. Honest," Jake explains. "I ran out of gas. I, I had a flat tire. I didn't have enough money for cab fare. My tux didn't come back from the cleaners. An old friend came in from out of town. Someone stole my car. There was an earthquake! A terrible flood! Locusts! IT WASN'T MY FAULT, I SWEAR TO GOD!"

This is pretty much how Democrats sound these days. None of their problems are their fault.

Game Change FREE

For the first time, more than half of voters think President Obama doesn't deserve to be re-elected. Almost three out of four Americans believe that the stimulus was wasted.

Evan Bayh's retirement has triggered a bowel-stewing panic among Democrats. Bayh is from Indiana, one of the two crown jewels of Obama's "red-blue" victory (the other being Virginia). Even a month ago, the notion that Republicans could get within striking distance of taking back the Senate was considered absurd. Now, it's a live possibility.

Obama's defenders note that he is personally popular, which is at best debatable. But even if that were true, Obama's personal political capital is as non-transferable as an out-of-state check drawn in crayon. It's certainly useless in getting ObamaCare or cap-and-trade passed. And, so far, it hasn't helped Democrats in Virginia, New Jersey, Massachusetts.

Harry Reid, the Senate majority leader and Obama's lead legislative Sherpa, is almost surely toast in his re-election bid. Richard Blumenthal, the popular Democratic candidate running for retiring Sen. Chris Dodd's seat in Connecticut says it's an "open question" whether he will even invite Obama to campaign for him. That's a vote of confidence.

Why is this happening? If you listen to the White House and its defenders in the press, the answer is simple: It's everyone else's fault.

Well, that's not entirely right. The Obama administration admits one mistake -- and one mistake only. It didn't explain itself better. In both his State of the Union address and interviews, Obama insisted he got all the policies right. It's just that the reportedly greatest orator in the history of the republic couldn't quite make himself clear enough.


Jonah Goldberg

Jonah Goldberg is editor-at-large of National Review Online,and the author of the forthcoming book The Tyranny of Clichés. You can reach him via Twitter @JonahNRO.
 
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