Musta Been Interesting

Carol Platt Liebau
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Posted: Feb 03, 2010 3:48 PM
How much fun it would have been to be able to read the minds of all the Democrats this morning as the President lectured them about leadership.

Look, I'd never count myself as a huge fan of any of them, but many of these people have been running and winning reelection for years now (and not just in deep blue regions of the country).  It must have been deeply galling for at least some of them to be chided for insufficient political courage  by a guy who wasn't even in politics when they were ascending to their second or third committee chairmanship -- and who has done a great deal to damage their political standing in just one short year.

What's more, it's hard to imagine that the President does himself much good with these sorts of reprimands.  There's no way that he's inspiring those he's supposed to be leading with finger-wagging about getting out of DC more and caring about politics less.  Much of the country already thinks that Obama is out-of-touch; no doubt that position picked up some votes in the Democrat caucus this morning.

Nor did the President do himself any good with his language directed at the GOP (claiming that he extended a hand and got a "clenched fist" in return) which recalled his inaugural address offer to American adversaries.  First, it obviously calls to mind the fact that he's willing to use more inflammatory language against domestic political opposition than he is against Iran.

Second, as I've noted before, anytime that someone who -- like Obama -- ran on a platform of "bipartisanship" and "working together" takes the low road and openly attacks opponents, he damages his brand.  Already, voters are deciding that Obama pulled something of a bait-and-switch (wasn't he supposed to be a pragmatic, centrist uniter who was in touch with the American people?)  and this just provides more evidence for that conclusion.