President Obama’s calculus “that by listening carefully and appealing to reason he can bring people together to get results” fundamentally fails to understand that Republicans will not do anything that they see politically benefiting Democrats. The GOP is not a good faith partner. They do not want to pass comprehensive health care reform. Bringing them along for the ride only succeeds in watering down the quality of what legislation is finally put to a vote, while not garnering a single Republican supporter. The administration simply does not seem willing to get that the GOP is not a good faith partner in negotiation on any subject. Continuing to treat them as such will only lead to worse political and policy outcomes, which will be less appealing to the general public and less effective at achieving their goals. Bipartisanship is not an outcome that helps a single American.
2 thoughts on “Patience Doesn’t Yield Results”
Obama is clearly a victim of his own success. What worked as a community organizer in Chicago has no applicablity to the cut throat world of big league politics and the most ruthless political party that this country has ever seen. His absence of experience in the Senate is equally a major element in his inability to recognize that not everyone is like him or subject to the same restraints of reason and “what is in the best intersts of the country”. I would also to remise not to also point out that these failures of perception dovetail into what is ultimately a fairly conservative outlook. Just because progressives supported him doesn’t mean he is progressive and just because he is literate and reasonable and can strike the rhetorical chords of the civil rights movement doesn’t mean that heart of hearts he is far more Clintonian and DLC than anything else. Progressives may also have been mislead by the progressive political tactics that he employed to seize the nomination from the Democratic establishment and have mistaken adherence to successful strategy for substantive politics. Oh well
Oh well indeed.
This has been a tough year for progressives and sadly, it’s not clear that 2010 will be better.