Gosh, he could have waited a day.
President Obama is already using next week’s address to Congress on the economy to further his political campaign, sending supporters an email message designed to pump up campaign participation and build the Obama 2012 email list.
The message was sent just hours after the White House announced the address. Bearing the subject line “This is important,” it is directly from President Obama and was sent to people on the campaign email list.
The move demonstrates unambiguously that the White House and the Obama campaign intend to use the speech and the drive for new “jobs” legislation as a political tool to hammer Republicans.
From the email:
Today I asked for a joint session of Congress where I will lay out a clear plan to get Americans back to work. Next week, I will deliver the details of the plan and call on lawmakers to pass it.
Whether they will do the job they were elected to do is ultimately up to them.
But both you and I can pressure them to do the right thing. We can send the message that the American people are playing by the rules and meeting their responsibilities — and it’s time for our leaders in Congress to meet theirs.
And we must hold them accountable if they don’t . . .
No matter how things go in the weeks and months ahead, this will be an important challenge for our organization.
Why, you may wonder, is improving the economy a “challenge” for a campaign organization?
Well, it’s not.
If you click a link provided in the email, you’re kindly invited to send over your email address. Those who have been forwarded the message by others will be signed onto the campaign. Those already signed up will be given an exciting new cause to believe in, as Obama operatives try to stir their increasingly disenchanted base of foot soldiers.
Without apparent irony, Obama says in what is a CAMPAIGN EMAIL that he wants Republicans “to look past short-term politics and take action.”
The direct call in the message for political pressure on members of Congress to “do the right thing” and to “hold them accountable if they don’t” points to a nakedly political motive for the speech itself.
If Obama were serious about advancing major legislation to improve the economy, he’d be downplaying politics, not directly injecting it into the debate.