An increasing number of those who matter are now saying that the Obama administration, hand in hand with Democrats in Congress, have turned victory into a rather large disaster in only eight short months.
This is why Joe and I have been so ticked off at Obama lately. We both saw this coming. We saw it coming a year ago – last August, 2008 – when we fretted privately, and then publicly, that Obama wasn’t willing to show some backbone and actually fight for his beliefs. And now, the president, along with Congress, has turned our biggest opportunity for change in a generation into predictions that we might lose the House next year.
Sure, there’s “only” a 25% to 33% change of it happening, per Nate Silver of 538.com. But the chances shouldn’t be that high at all on the heels of a GOP slaughter last November. And, considering how quickly things can change, imagine what another year and a half of the kind of leadership we’ve had to date will do to our chances to keep the House, let alone what it will do to our 60 vote (now 59 without Kennedy) majority in the Senate. And let’s not even talk about whether Obama wins re-election.
It doesn’t give either Joe or me any pleasure to be right about the Democrats’ failings. We get ticked at Obama and the Democrats in Congress because we care. Because we want to win. Because we want them to succeed. That’s why we supported Barack Obama long before it was cool. That’s why we raised nearly $50,000 for the man during last year’s election. But the unfortunate truth of politics, that I learned while volunteering for Senator Kennedy’s office back in the early 1990s, is that in order to win legislatively you need to spend far more time than you’d ever imagine beating up on your own party to do the right thing.
President Obama and the Democrats in Congress have taken a rather glorious victory and made a supreme mess of things in a little more than half a year. They’ve not only single-handedly resuscitated a dying Republican party, they’ve damaged their own rather stellar brand to boot. And if anyone is troubled by our leaders’ unwillingness to follow through on campaign promises now, due to an almost pathological need to be “bipartisan,” just wait and see what happens if Democrats lose a ton of seats in 2010. At that point, you can kiss any remaining promises goodbye for good.