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CBS Political Dir Tells Obama To Destroy GOP

From CBS’s Political Director, John Dickerson, who also writes for Slate Magazine:

Go for the Throat!

Why if he wants to transform American politics, Obama must declare war on the Republican Party.

By John Dickerson | January 18, 2013

On Monday, President Obama will preside over the grand reopening of his administration. It would be altogether fitting if he stepped to the microphone, looked down the mall, and let out a sigh: so many people expecting so much from a government that appears capable of so little. A second inaugural suggests new beginnings, but this one is being bookended by dead-end debates. Gridlock over the fiscal cliff preceded it and gridlock over the debt limit, sequester, and budget will follow. After the election, the same people are in power in all the branches of government and they don’t get along. There’s no indication that the president’s clashes with House Republicans will end soon

Apparently, Mr. Dickerson is unaware that the Republicans caved on the ‘fiscal cliff.’ And they have already promised to cave on the ‘debt ceiling.’ So what is the problem? That there is any opposition party at all?

Besides, whatever happened to the news media’s obsession with compromise and bi-partisan ship? (This is a rhetorical question.)

After the last four years, how do you call the nation and its elected representatives to common action while standing on the steps of a building where collective action goes to die? …

Has Mr. Dickerson ever noticed how much of our elected representatives actions have been killed in the ‘do nothing’ Democrat controlled Senate?

The challenge for President Obama’s speech is the challenge of his second term: how to be great when the environment stinks. Enhancing the president’s legacy requires something more than simply the clever application of predictable stratagems. Washington’s partisan rancor, the size of the problems facing government, and the limited amount of time before Obama is a lame duck all point to a single conclusion: The president who came into office speaking in lofty terms about bipartisanship and cooperation can only cement his legacy if he destroys the GOP. If he wants to transform American politics, he must go for the throat.

So Mr. Dickerson is calling for one party rule? Of course, the hilarious thing here is that he doesn’t seem to realize that Obama has been trying to destroy the GOP from the get-go. He and CBS have been on the same page for five years.

[T]here’s no sign [Obama’s] content to ride out the second half of the game in the Barcalounger. He is approaching gun control, climate change, and immigration with wide and excited eyes. He’s not going for caretaker.

How should the president proceed then, if he wants to be bold?

Obama’s only remaining option is to pulverize. Whether he succeeds in passing legislation or not, given his ambitions, his goal should be to delegitimize his opponents. Through a series of clarifying fights over controversial issues, he can force Republicans to either side with their coalition’s most extreme elements or cause a rift in the party that will leave it, at least temporarily, in disarray

Again, this CBS newsman doesn’t realize that this is what Obama has already been doing for years?

[B]y exploiting the weaknesses of today’s Republican Party, Obama has an opportunity to hasten the demise of the old order by increasing the political cost of having the GOP coalition defined by Second Amendment absolutists, climate science deniers [sic], supporters of “self-deportation” and the pure no-tax wing.

Just look at how CBS News views the core tenets of conservatism.

The president has the ambition and has picked a second-term agenda that can lead to clarifying fights. The next necessary condition for this theory to work rests on the Republican response. Obama needs two things from the GOP: overreaction and charismatic dissenters….

On gun control, the National Rifle Association has overreached. Its Web video mentioning the president’s children crossed a line…

As usual, the news media believes that if they repeat a lie often enough it becomes an historical fact.

Republicans who want to oppose the president on policy grounds now have to make a decision: Do they want to be associated with a group that opposes, in such impolitic ways, measures like universal background checks that 70 to 80 percent of the public supports?… The NRA, by close association, risks further defining the Republican Party as the party of angry, white Southern men

And white Southern men are the new devils in the US. At least according to the media and the rest of the Democrat Party.

Out of fear for the long-term prospects of the GOP, some Republicans may be willing to partner with the president. That would actually mean progress on important issues facing the country, which would enhance Obama’s legacy. If not, the president will stir up a fracas between those in the Republican Party who believe it must show evolution on issues like immigration, gun control, or climate change and those who accuse those people of betraying party principles…

The president can stir up these fights by poking the fear among Republicans that the party is becoming defined by its most extreme elements, which will in turn provoke fear among the most faithful conservatives that weak-willed conservatives are bending to the popular mood. That will lead to more tin-eared, dooming declarations of absolutism like those made by conservatives who sought to define the difference between legitimate and illegitimate rape—and handed control of the Senate to Democrats along the way

It sure sounds like Mr. Dickerson wants fear-mongering and conflict. At least when it comes from the left.

This approach is not a path of gentle engagement. It requires confrontation and bright lines and tactics that are more aggressive than the president demonstrated in the first term…

Did Pravda ever go this far cheering on Josef Stalin? Anyway, it looks like Mr. Dickerson got Obama’s speech in advance. Or maybe he helped him write it.

Still, bear in mind that this is not from the Political Director for the Obama campaign or even the DNC. It’s from is the Political Director for CBS News.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Tuesday, January 22nd, 2013. Comments are currently closed.

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