Frenemy In Chief

Carol Platt Liebau
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Posted: Sep 21, 2011 5:33 PM
 I have long thought that President Clinton isn't an unqualified supporter of President Obama's -- not just because Obama defeated his wife for the Democratic nomination, but also because Clinton deeply resented having his status as "#1 Democratic rock star"/eminence grise summarily revoked when Barack Obama appeared on the scene.

With his customary insight, James Taranto yesterday summarized all the reasons that Bill Clinton is Barack Obama's "public frenemy no. 1."

And note that the former president keeps it up today, setting out for the record his opposition to any tax increases right now.  It's understandable -- if not entirely admirable -- that Clinton would be trying to put plenty of daylight between himself and Barack Obama right now.  Not only is he no doubt interested in burnishing his own reputation -- he's also probably trying to save the Democratic "brand" as polls show the country turning hard against liberalism.

It's never been entirely clear to me that the Clintons and Barack Obama are diametrically opposed in terms of policy wishes and objectives.  What has always seemed clear is that, unlike Obama, the Clintons are incrementalists (and pragmatists) where Obama is an ideologue, and one suspects that both Clintons know that Obama has pushed too much lefty stuff too fast -- and the country is choking on it, to the detriment of liberalism in years to come.