A few words of wisdom from . . . Ruth Marcus:
On health care, he accepted "my share of the blame" -- but only for "not explaining it more clearly to the American people." I'm supportive of health reform and the president's decision to try it despite the head winds of a bad economy. No president lacks for explanatory opportunities; this president is a gifted explainer who has seized every such moment. To assess the problem as simply one of salesmanship underestimates the degree and nature of public concern. Likewise, Obama's distancing dismissal of "all the lobbying and horse-trading" ignores the White House's central role at the corral. After you've been in the backroom with PhRMA, it rings more than a little false to express outrage about what was going on in there.No, it isn't. And once a bubble has popped it's impossible to put it back together.
So can a chastened Obama regain the lost sense of excitement and opportunity? Eventually, perhaps, but never entirely. The second time is never as thrilling.
But she has hopes for next year:
This could be Obama's low point. The economy is slowly recovering. The loss of the Massachusetts Senate seat was a political earthquake, but Democrats have already factored in the likelihood of a bleak November and dramatically narrowed majorities. By next year's State of the Union, the president, I predict, will be neither as beleaguered as he now appears nor as invincible as he seemed a year ago.That's the best-case scenario. But there's no reason to think Obama and company have hit bottom. Worst case: "an epic party disaster."
And he certainly didn't appear "chastened" yesterday in Baltimore. He struck me as pretty cocky. That probably pleases his supporters on the left but what will independents make of it?
h/t: Jennifer Rubin
Thanks to Doug Ross for the link.
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