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Morning Jay: Obama Has No Clue What To Do With Himself

6:00 AM, Aug 12, 2011 • By JAY COST
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Obama, on the other hand, has not taken either course. He has not followed Truman’s lead, and fought the Republicans “on the beaches, on the landing grounds, in the fields, and in the streets.” Instead, he has cut deals again and again with the GOP – on the Bush tax cuts, on government spending through 2011, and now on the debt ceiling. Yet he has not been like Clinton, either, who smartly offered his own balanced budget plan to counter the Republican onslaught, thus enabling him to dominate the agenda through the budget battles of 1995 and 1996.

Instead, Obama just seems to…gripe:

Aligning himself with a public fed up with economic uncertainty and Washington gridlock, President Barack Obama declared Thursday: "There is nothing wrong with our country. There is something wrong with our politics."

His toughly worded message - he said there was frustration in his voice, in case anyone missed the point - came amid a series of polls showing that people are disgusted with political dysfunction and are dispensing blame all around, including on Obama.

"They look at what's happening in Washington and they think these folks are really from outer space because they don't seem to understand how critical it is for us all to work together, Republicans, Democrats, independents, in order to move this country forward," Obama said.

He added that the country is realizing the need to get involved.

"We're going to have to get engaged and we're going to have to speak out," Obama said. "We're going to have to register the fact that we expect more and we expect better."

This has to be one of the worst political strategies I have ever encountered. How can the current occupant of 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue credibly campaign as a Washington outsider? Surely he must understand the obvious problem with this approach: By complaining that the political system is broken, the president is admitting that he cannot fix it! This is no way for Obama to climb back to political relevance. After all, if the president admits that he has failed to fix Washington, then why should voters keep him around for another four years?

Clearly, the president has no idea what to do with himself. Yesterday's campaign-style address was a pathetic spectacle indeed.

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