Obama fails “Leadership 101” – again
You are President of the United States. All 57 of them. And you have a challenge in front of you. The public is alarmed by the level of government debt and sharply rising deficits. Of course, being a “Constitutional law professor” you know that any action on this must be initiated by the House of Representatives since by law they are charged with the budget and appropriations. But because of a lack of confidence in the leadership of your party, as they held majorities in both chambers of Congress, the House was reclaimed by the opposition party who now enjoys a solid majority there.
So as a leader, you must address the reality of the situation, tone down the partisan rhetoric, make overtures to bipartisan cooperation and attempt to bridge the partisan gap that you and your party have helped create these past two years. Leadership 101.
Instead we got this – POLITICO lays it out for you:
President Barack Obama extended a fiscal olive branch to Republicans on Wednesday.
Then he beat them up with it. Obama’s long-anticipated speech on the deficit at George Washington University was one of the oddest rhetorical hybrids of his presidency — a serious stab at reforming entitlements cloaked in a 2012 campaign speech that was one of the most overtly partisan broadsides he’s ever delivered from a podium with a presidential seal.
I differ with the analysis – it wasn’t a serious stab at anything. No details were present. Just a “framework”, which is Obama’s usual way of laying off responsibility or outsourcing his job to others. His entire first term, to date, has been about grand and nebulous words left to others to flesh out.
But back to the point – as someone, I believe it was Paul Ryan, said, instead of building bridges with his speech, Obama went about poisoning wells.
What he essentially acted like was a Senate back bencher throwing verbal bombs at the opposition. And, of course, if you recall, that’s precisely what he was until he managed to fool enough people into electing him president.
How stupid was it to act as he did this past Wednesday?
But the combative tenor of Obama’s remarks, which included a swipe at his potential 2012 GOP challengers, may have scuttled the stated purpose of the entire enterprise — to start negotiations with Republicans on a workable bipartisan approach to attacking the deficit.
And it didn’t build much goodwill ahead of upcoming fights, especially the looming battle over raising the debt ceiling.
That’s correct – the looming fights have now been made partisan by a president who set the tone. Donald Trump called him the worst president ever (well, unless Donald Trump were to become president that is). I have to agree – and I lived through Jimmy Carter who now seems almost competent in comparison.
Carter at least tried to be a leader. This man makes no attempt at leadership. He’s a hack politician in way over his head and seems to thrive on political one-upsmanship, partisan bickering and playing politics with everything.
Leaders lead. Sounds trite and clichéd, but as was said about porn, you know one when you see one.
I’ve known many leaders in my day, and Mr. Obama is no leader.