The hypocrisy of Obama playing the class warfare card in public and then wooing wealthy donors in private isn’t lost on the Occupy Wall Street crowd. Around 100 protesters showed up to picket the president’s fundraising blitz in New York last night:
Demonstrators held signs that leveled some of the Occupy protest’s most pointed criticism to date of the president. “Obama is a corporate puppet,” one said. “War crimes must be stopped, no matter who does them,” read another, beside headshots of President George W. Bush and President Obama.
One man, wearing a mask of the president’s face and holding a cigar, carried a sign that read, “I sold out!”
It’s interesting that some of the protesters were attacking Obama on foreign policy, especially since the anti-war movement has died down so much since the Bush administration. Will there be a resurgence of the movement if Obama starts highlighting his foreign policy record on the campaign trail? Maybe – but if last night was any indication, Obama has a lot more than that to worry about. It illustrated that the OWS movement is both willing and able to mobilize against Obama, which could end up putting him in a difficult position when he starts moving toward the center in preparation for the election.
The Democrats brought this problem on themselves. By supporting and praising OWS at the beginning of the movement, they legitimized and granted power to a whole host of radical ideologues: anarchists, socialists, and so on. These fringe activists can now pressure Obama under the banner of the Occupy Wall Street movement – which the president himself said had legitimate concerns. It’s easy to see how this could blow up in his face during the election.