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NYT: Even Some Supporters Fear Obama’s Hubris

From the New York Times:

Watching Obama for Signs of Change

By JACKIE CALMES | February 11, 2013

WASHINGTON — On Tuesday night, the president will address the nation and Congress on the state of the union. But many will watch as well for signs of the state of Barack Obama.

Inside the White House and out, advisers and associates have noted subtle but palpable changes in Mr. Obama since his re-election. “He even carries himself a little bit differently,” said one confidant who, like others, asked not to be identified discussing the president. He is relaxed, more voluble and even more confident than usual, these people say, freer to drop profanities or dismiss others’ ideas — enough that even some supporters fear the potential for hubris

Even his some supporters fear the potential for hubris? Where have they been for the last six years? Still, what a shocking thing to read in the New York Times, which is to Obama what Tiger Beat is to Justin Bieber.

As the president prepares to outline his second-term agenda, it is clear from these personal accounts as well as his public acts, like his bold Inaugural Address, that he has shown an assertiveness, self-possession, even cockiness that contrasts with the caution, compromise and reserve that he showed for much of his first term…

You mean his ‘I Won’ first term? During which he rammed through healthcare and a dozen other wildly unpopular issues. And threatened the Supreme Court. And bypassed Congress with endless executive orders?

What is not so clear is whether Mr. Obama can parlay this commanding self-assurance — borne of re-election, hard lessons learned and Republicans’ disarray — into victories as he tries to turn Washington away from its obsession with deficit-cutting to a broader progressive agenda. Or will he overreach, alienate some Americans and cement the partisan divide he once promised to bridge?

It’s pretty hilarious that The Times would even bring up the "partisan divide." Especially, since the editors of the New York Times have been constantly pushing Obama to be more aggressive and more partisan. It’s also hilarious to hear that Washington is obsessed with deficit cutting.

By the way, remember when The Times and the rest of the Democrat Party used to say that our deficit was a threat to our national security? Whatever happened to that?

Mr. Obama is said to be aware of the risks, though among his remaining aides it is not plain who might confront him at any danger signs. And Democrats say that the president, like many of them, believes Republicans are more vulnerable to overstepping politically by obstructing his agenda.

So the real dangers of hubris are on the Republican side, after all. Okay, now we are back on familiar territory.

So far Mr. Obama has carried the day. Even before his swearing-in, he had staked battle lines on taxing the wealthy and raising the federal debt limit and gave little ground, forcing Republicans to retreat.

Remember how the news media was going to force Obama into being more compromising?

On Tuesday night, in the House chamber, he will be in their faces, setting the agenda on immigration and gun safety — issues that were unthinkable only two years ago, when Republicans had just triumphed in midterm elections — and defining a debt-reduction strategy that not only cuts spending but also raises revenues to allow government investments in programs for the middle class and small businesses…

Lest we forget, the Republicans were told that their historic landslide victory in 2010 was meaningless. And that they had no mandate to cut spending or to do anything.

With the crisis that defined his first term behind him, and the economy growing, if slowly, the legacy-minded Mr. Obama seems almost liberated at being given more time for unfinished business like immigration and climate change, and new issues like gun safety, say those who have met with him.

Apparently, the New York Times is unaware that our economy contracted in the last quarter. A single contraction was called a recession under President Bush (by re-defining ‘recessions’), but under Obama it’s a sign that the economy is "growing."

Perhaps most altered is his approach toward Republicans. Mr. Obama largely bypassed them when Democrats controlled Congress, and then sought compromise once Republicans won control of the House, only to have the emboldened party refuse most deal-making with him.

No one can cite a single example where Obama ever once "sought compromise" with the Republicans. Including, the ‘Grand Bargain,’ during which Boehner gave Obama everything he asked for. And Obama still walked away from the deal. He was as arrogant then as he is now.

Now the president is defining a third stage in the relationship: He has the upper hand after voters chose his vision of government’s role and responsibilities over the opposition’s, and he is extending it on his terms. He is counting on Republicans to join hands when they see issues — like immigration — where cooperation is in their party’s own political interest…

Yes, creating 11 million (and actually twice that many) new Democrat voters is definitely in the Republican Party’s interest.

Republicans are left hoping that Mr. Obama, like second-term presidents before him, will somehow stumble and lose leverage with time. They take heart that the party without the White House typically gains Congressional seats in midterm elections, as Republicans did in 2010. But after two years running the House, they and their agenda are far less popular going into 2014…

That is exactly what we were told in 2010, too.

While polls consistently show that Mr. Obama’s positions are more popular than Republicans’, that is not true in many of the Republicans’ districts and states…

The premise of this sentence is not even remotely true. Every one of Obama’s signature policies is unpopular with the American public: Obama-Care, same sex marriage, higher taxes, increased spending, amnesty, gun control… You name it. Every single issue.

This article was posted by Steve Gilbert on Tuesday, February 12th, 2013. Comments are currently closed.

One Response to “NYT: Even Some Supporters Fear Obama’s Hubris”

  1. Republicans are more vulnerable to overstepping politically by obstructing his agenda.
    Overstepping what? How can obstruction of radical leftwing policies equate to overstepping in any context?


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