Obama admitted to Dems in May that he probably wouldn’t stand up to GOP in debt talks

He simply vocalized what we already knew.

The article does a pretty good job of laying out how the President approaches negotiating. He sees himself as the mediator. The only problem is that if he’s the mediator, then there’s no left flank. There’s simply the right, the mediator, and no one else.

Instead, the president often operated more as a mediator, accepting the need to cut spending, including entitlements, while limiting his priorities to avoid default and any more debt-ceiling votes until after his reelection campaign.

“You look for what the other side needs. You look for what you need,” said White House budget director Jacob J. Lew, describing Obama’s negotiation philosophy. “And you look for a solution where both can have honorable outcomes. You can’t vanquish each other.”

By that measure, Obama got what he wanted.

It’s like bringing a mediator to a street fight. They bring a knife, you bring a mediator. They bring a gun, you bring a mediator. But even that analogy is wrong. The President tries to put himself in the middle when he’s a part to the negotiation, even when he’s the only other party to the negotiation. He doesn’t try to do what’s best on substance. He tries to defuse the situation at all, and any, costs.


Follow me on Twitter: @aravosis | @americablog | @americabloggay | Facebook | Instagram | Google+ | LinkedIn. John Aravosis is the Executive Editor of AMERICAblog, which he founded in 2004. He has a joint law degree (JD) and masters in Foreign Service from Georgetown; and has worked in the US Senate, World Bank, Children's Defense Fund, the United Nations Development Programme, and as a stringer for the Economist. He is a frequent TV pundit, having appeared on the O'Reilly Factor, Hardball, World News Tonight, Nightline, AM Joy & Reliable Sources, among others. John lives in Washington, DC. .

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