The president and his party are reworking the message. Envy is out – or to be downplayed, anyway – and optimism is in. They tried “wealth inequality,” and it didn’t resonate. Now, as Zachary A. Goldfarb, at the Washington Post reports:

After making fighting income inequality an early focus of his second term, President Obama has largely abandoned talk of the subject this election year in a move that highlights the emerging debate within the Democratic Party over economic populism and its limits.

This is not, it seems, the usual tinkering at the margins but:

… hints at a broader repositioning of Democratic messaging ahead of the midterm elections and, perhaps, the 2016 presidential race. House and Senate strategists and their pollsters have concluded that they should focus less on the wealth gap and more on emphasizing that all Americans should have economic “opportunity” to get ahead or a “fair shot.”

One wonders if those concepts of opportunity and the fair shot are so alien that they require quotes. But never mind. Now, perhaps, the strategists and pollsters can move on to the even more exotic terrain of “tax reform.” And, then, “regulatory relief.”

Which have been known to result in something called “economic growth.”

Quaint but true.

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