Commentary Magazine


What Obama Needs Is a Calendar…

The New York Times this morning reports that Obama is trying to “turn around his presidency.”

That would be an excellent idea in the wake of the results of Tuesday’s election in Massachusetts. But I have my doubts that he is going to change his approach, his attitude, or his agenda. He doesn’t seem to have changed his rhetoric. The Times quotes the president in an ABC News interview as saying:

Here’s my assessment of not just the vote in Massachusetts but the mood around the country — the same thing that swept Scott Brown into office swept me into office. People are angry and they are frustrated. Not just because of what’s happened in the last year or two years, but what’s happened over the last eight years.

Ummm, Mr. President, one of those eight years was on your watch. This is January 2010, not 2009. The people of Massachusetts didn’t elect a Republican senator to a seat held by a Democrat since 1952 because of the failures of a Republican president.

I usually hate having to watch the State of the Union speech, but the one President Obama will deliver next Wednesday is must-see TV. If we get more of the failure-of-the-last-eight-years rhetoric, Obama’s political capital — already severely depleted — will be gone. If he acknowledges that he blew it in his first year and will mend his ways, the American people — a forgiving group — will give him another chance.

By the way, if the Republicans need someone to give the Republican response, I have a suggestion: Scott Brown.