Former President Jimmy Carter does not think much about Hillary Clinton's effort to bring about peace in the Middle East. John Kerry's efforts, on the other hand, are "notable," according to Carter.
He made the remarks in an interview with Time magazine, in response to this question: "What’s your take on Secretary Kerry’s efforts so far in the Mideast?"
"I think they are notable, and I have a great admiration for him. I stay in touch with him fairly often by email, I send him messages and tell him what my thoughts might be, and he has responded very graciously. He has had a very difficult time operating pretty much on his own. I know from experience that the best way to have the United States be a mediator is for the president himself to be deeply involved," said Carter before pivoting to criticize Clinton. "In this occasion, when Secretary Clinton was Secretary of State, she took very little action to bring about peace. It was only John Kerry’s coming into office that reinitiated all these very important and crucial issues."
Carter also indicated that he's been in touch with Kerry about his efforts in the Middle East.
"I don’t want to reveal what messages I’ve sent to Secretary Kerry. But I’ve urged him as he formulates the framework not to deviate from longstanding international law that has always been observed by the United States and by all the Europeans and by the Israelis and the Arab countries, and I think to reverse all those basic United Nations that everyone has agreed to establish would be a step backwards," Carter told Time.
The oldest and most durable of all Washington handouts is the agricultural subsidy. Without it, of course, farm families would be forced off the land, food prices would rise, and all manner of woe would be the nation's lot.
I've been wary of comparisons of this year's presidential race with that of 1980. I'd love it if the comparison holds, but have been worried 1) that the conditions aren't the same as in 1980 in all kinds of ways, and 2) that over-confidence the race will inevitably break to Romney at the end, as the 1980 race did to Reagan, could lead to complacency on the right rather than a sense of urgency, including a sense of urgency in pushing the Romney campaign to improve.
When Republican strategists like Karl Rove cite 1980 as a model for this year’s election, they usually have in mind two main elements: Ronald Reagan’s question in the late October presidential debate about whether voters felt better off than four years earlier, when they elected Jimmy Carter, and Reagan’s ability in that debate to reassure swing voters about his ability to serve successfully if elected, converting a very close race into a ten-point blowout by “closing the deal.”
President Obama is outside the ideological mainstream, viewed as very liberal by an electorate that’s moderate or somewhat conservative. His domestic policies are unpopular, notably his health care law, economic stimulus, and spending plans. His foreign policy initiatives—curbing Iran’s nuclear weapons program, improving America’s position in the Middle East, fostering better relations with Russia—have failed. The public wants Obama to jettison his ineffective economic policies and implement new ones. But he refuses.
According to a Newsweek/Daily Beast poll of likely voters, Barack Obama now rates behind Jimmy Carter in the pantheon of great presidents. The poll asked likely voters to list the two best and the two worst presidents the history of the United States. Here are the tallies, based on net results: