‘from wimp to winner’

Andrew Romano (Daily Beast): Obama outmaneuvers his opponents – and his allies – every time … Andrew Romano looks at how the president’s pragmatism gets results.

….nary a day has passed without some Republican, somewhere, calling him a weakling, a wimp, or worse. But last week, as Obama prepared to respond to Paul Ryan’s long-term budget plan with a proposal of his own, an unlikely group of kvetches joined the girlie-man chorus to carp about the president’s once and future fecklessness: the nation’s top liberal pundits.

….Paul Krugman mocked the president as a “bland, timid guy who doesn’t seem to stand for anything in particular”. The Daily Beast’s Eric Alterman likened the leader of the free world to “a boxer who … [spends] the entire fight taking punch after punch on the ropes” … the only thing missing was Keith Olbermann flapping his arms and clucking “chicken”.

To hear Krugman & Co. tell it, Obama was all set to stride on stage at George Washington University, collapse into the fetal position, and announce that he was willing do whatever John Boehner wanted. What actually happened, however, was quite different. In a forceful 40-minute speech, the president outlined a plan to reduce the deficit by $4 trillion over 12 years. The speech wasn’t wholly liberal. But it hit most of the notes – raising taxes on the rich, shrinking the defense budget, protecting the social safety net – that liberals longed to hear.

…he is a hard-nosed pragmatist determined to maximize results. When liberals whine, says White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer, it’s like “a fourth-inning analysis of a nine-inning game. People say ‘he screwed up the negotiations,’ but the deal ends up being very good given the political reality”.

…Obama’s initial leadership strategy was tailored to a time when Republicans couldn’t torpedo his agenda. In policy terms, the approach paid off, helping him put more points on the board during his first two years – the stimulus package, health-care reform, financial regulation, and so on – than any president since LBJ….

..Last week reports revealed that Obama’s agreement with Republicans to slash $38 billion from the 2011 budget – the supposedly timid compromise that kindled the left’s conniption – actually contained less than $25 billion in spending cuts, few of them to cherished Democratic programs. The same day, Public Policy Polling released a survey showing that independents, who backed Republicans 56 percent to 37 percent in 2010, now prefer Democrats 42 percent to 33 percent – a 28-point reversal. If those are the sort of things that happen when a president takes “punch after punch on the ropes,” then Obama might want to keep getting slugged.

Full article here

10 Responses to “‘from wimp to winner’”

  1. 1 Debz
    April 18, 2011 at 11:16 am

    It is a pleasure to see more people calling out the PLs for what they are. Whiners. If more people paid attention to PBO’s words and his past actions, they wouldn’t be so shocked when he does something they like. The interview he gave to a newspaper where he said he would crush people who take advantage of him, should be on a 24/7 loop. During the ’08 election the article written by Kornacki in the New Yorker, called PBO a “ruthless politician” no on could become the first AA President without being ruthless. This is why I don’t understand why the PL keep doubting him.

  2. 2 anniebella
    April 18, 2011 at 11:18 am

    The President I gladly voted for November 4, 2008 was not a wimp. I voted for Barack H. Obama. A darn good President.

  3. 3 HZ
    April 18, 2011 at 12:46 pm

    The man who is the President of the United States is named Barack H. Obama and we respect him with that name and title. Those who choose to call him otherwise should be ashamed. We should be very careful in attacking a man’s character especially when the word is out,”We do not know who this man is.” Well he is a man of goodness, peacemaker, great compassion in his deeds, tough with those who try to make him fall, and has a vision for this country that I have not seen in a President for a long time. God bless the President. There is nothing wimpy about Barack Obama. I concue with your statement Anniebella. That is the voice we will speak as you so aptly stated it.

  4. 4 HZ
    April 18, 2011 at 12:48 pm

    I am sorry, should be concur with anniebella. I apologize.

  5. 5 ber6964
    April 18, 2011 at 12:56 pm

    They chose to ignore or ridicule this President and then when he calls them out on it they all run away,hide or complain how mean he is to them. The ONLY ADULT in the Whole Country Most of the Time!

  6. 6 Theo67
    April 18, 2011 at 12:58 pm

    The author looks like he’s about 14 years old… Regardless, this article acknowledges that the President is in a league of his own, but still manages to call him names while praising him. The facts are the facts – and the fact is that this President is an amazing human being. And incredibly wise. Period.

    • 7 Dorothy Rissman
      April 18, 2011 at 5:38 pm

      Thanks for this Chipsticks. I thought it was an interesting article. Boy the comments on that site were shocking.
      Lots of republicans.

  7. 8 Sue in Minnesota
    April 18, 2011 at 1:32 pm

    Just like the school yard bully, when their tactics and immaturity are exposed we recognize the lack of substance. We wonder why America suffers from an epidemic of bullying, yet it’s the template for our politics and our MSM.

    President Obama is way ahead of them in everyway, intellect, strategy, political savvy, heart, grace, fortitude and BALLS
    (sorry for my coarse reference.)

    President Obama has given everyone an opportunity to grow up and exercise smarter, more mature approaches to how we conduct ourselves and resolve our issues. He leads by example, and has opened the door for others to do the same. That so many choose to ignore this opportunity is on them….and they look small, petty and ineffective when they refuse to engage in the “game” change. The longer this continues, the more they squander their opportunities, diminishing their impact and credibility.

  8. 9 CEB
    April 18, 2011 at 2:53 pm

    beautifully stated, Sue. I am in complete agreement.

  9. April 18, 2011 at 3:03 pm

    An analogy–Each time I read an article like this, I am reminded of my cat Toga’s paws. Toga’s paws are soft, gentle, lovable and his temperament renders him easy to love. But underneath thoes soft paws are lethal weapons-very sharp Claws. When backed in a corner he takes no prisoners, he just annihilates and he doesn’t “strut his stuff”. When he is finished, he just kinda goes back to the window sill with a look on his face like, “call me what you want” but I can kick your butt any day. The intellect behind these soft paws camouflages an intelligence you don’t come close to having and because my deceptive soft paws gives you the impression that I a wimp- GOTCHA YA!!!

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