Racing desperately to the center to rescue his sagging poll numbers, President Obama today careened completely out of control and landed in bed with . . . Ronald Reagan and Dwight D. Eisenhower.
Obama, who lately can’t stop talking about the middle class, small business, capital investment tax breaks, and so on, went beyond the typical Democratic embrace of Lincoln and Teddy Roosevelt and grabbed hold of two of the modern GOP’s paragons as well. Here’s what he just said in Cleveland.
But we also recognize that throughout our history there has been a noble Republican vision as well of what this country can be. It was the vision of Abraham Lincoln, who set up the first land grant colleges and launched the transcontinental railroad; the vision of Teddy Roosevelt, who used the power of government to break up monopolies; the vision of Dwight Eisenhower, who helped build the Interstate Highway System; and, yes, the vision of Ronald Reagan, who, despite his aversion to government, was willing to help save Social Security for future generations, working with Democrats.
These were serious leaders for serious times. They were great politicians, but they didn’t spend all their time playing games or scoring points. They didn’t always prey on people’s fears and anxieties. They made mistakes, but they did what they thought was in the best interests of their country and its people.
Not everything we’ve done over the last two years has worked as quickly as we had hoped, and I am keenly aware that not all our policies have been popular.
I would really love to hear what Obama actually said in the early 1980s during those smoke-filled dorm room political debates – yes, you know what kind off smoke I’m talking about – that all bright young college things engaged in during those days, and probably today too.
Maybe he said something like this, the common liberal critique of Reagan at the time, as some of you may remember.
A governing philosophy . . . about how America should work: cut taxes, especially for millionaires and billionaires; cut regulations for special interests; cut trade deals even if they didn’t benefit our workers; cut back on investments in our people and in our future — in education, in clean energy, in research and technology. . . that if we just had blind faith in the market, if we let corporations play by their own rules, if we left everyone else to fend for themselves, then America would grow and America would prosper.
Oops, wait a second. That’s what Obama said about George W. Bush and the congressional Republicans of the past decade.
Obama must adore some Ronald Reagan that we never really knew. Someone, in fact, who didn’t exist.
So much for a “noble Republican vision.”