The failed Obama administration

I remember that Clinton had barely taken office when the Republican echo chamber began declaring him a failed president. Now that the vast right-wing conspiracy has its raison d’etre restored, how will it begin its anti-Obama demagoguery?

Why, with thread titles like yours, of course!

Here’s one suggestion:

Elections have consequences. Except when the Dems win. Then they need to remember that it’s a center-right nation.

Yeah, I loved that treacherous hack’s concession speech last night, reminding his supporters that Obama’s duty will be to “compromise” with them. Like he would have compromised, would be my plan.

I don’t know but I’d like to throw the Bush rhetoric back in their faces. “you’re either with us or against us you traitor.”

The test of Obama’s much vaunted post partisanship will be how his administration deals with those attacks. This was a concern many of us expressed during the primaries (before all we progressives enlisted as the Obamajadin or became Barack’n’rollas). We said things like “you don’t bring kumbaya to a gunfight.” We suspected that Obama’s pragmatic tendency to reach across the aisle would only be seen as weakness by Republicans who tried their best to bury the “Democrat” party over the past decade and a half (or longer). And we thought that whatever happened, whoever became the next Democratic POTUS would be despised and disdained by members of a Republican party which had become convinced of a permanent majority, one-party rule America.

I still think those are valid concerns, but having learned and argued so much about President-elect Obama’s* background and methods, I’m somewhat optimistic about his ability to deal with these fellows effectively. Frankly, after the two year campaign we’ve seen, I find it hard to think the opposition party will throw anything at the Obama administration for which they haven’t already plotted detailed costs and contingencies.

I’m a believer in Obama’s focus on effective and inclusive management of the government. That necessarily means he must, in the immediate case, reach out and cooperate with those who wish him defeat and ruin in the long term. My guess is that he’ll continue as he’s campaigned, stressing one America, common causes and consensus approaches. I suspect this will give him the positional leverage to push the extremist attacks to the margins as soon as they occur.

But it’s sure going to be a running battle. I think the way Obama handles the conflict will forever change both parties. And I like our chances.

*Wow, that feels good to say!

Well, I’m not in much position to influence the Republicans in the Senate. But I do believe that elections have consequences, and if President Obama were to nominate, say, Harry Pregerson to the Supreme Court, I’d say the vote should be “yes” from the Senate, even though I completely disagree with his judicial philosophy and he’d end up displacing Ginsburg as my “most disagreed with” justice.

Because, dammit, the President gets to appoint the Justices, and unless the appointment is (a la Miers) actually objectively not qualified, then the next four years are his to shape the Court. That’s what winning the White House means.

I disagree. The Senate has the right to exercise its consent power however it wishes. It’s a critical part of the balance of power created by the Constitution. The president and the Senate must reach consensus between them. The president gets no trump card.

Bricker, occasionally, when reading posters’ attacks on you, I wonder why I am reflexively inclinced to give you the benefit of the doubt. Then I read posts such as this one, and I remember: because you’re one of those men of good will I can both disagree with and genuinely admire and respect.

Absodamnlutely. It’s irritating that Congress tends to forget this only when authoritarians are elected to the White House and we really need those checks and balances.