Has Obama Become Irrelevant In Debt Limit Debate?
Jason Riley of the WSJ seems to think he has:
What very well might happen, however, is a deal between the House and the Senate that does not involve the president. After negotiations between the White House and Republican lawmakers broke down on Friday, Mr. Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid began working directly with one another to end the protracted stalemate. A proposal put forward by Mr. Boehner would lift the debt ceiling in two stages and reduce the deficit by $3 trillion over 10 years. Mr. Reid’s plan would couple a debt-limit hike with $2.7 trillion in spending cuts over a decade. Neither plan calls for tax hikes, which might indicate that Mr. Obama’s fellow Democrats also think that he’s misreading the polls.
Among other things, last night’s speech was an attempt by the president to take some credit for a deal that could be brokered without him. Or maybe despite him.
Indeed. Obama has been doing what he was famous for in the Senate: voting “present.” He seems to think that speechifying (five times in the last three weeks, if my count is correct) is real leadership, when what he really needs to be doing is the very thing he doesn’t seem to enjoy: “sitting hour after hour, day after day, debating the fine points of the federal budget, uh, with members of Congress.” You know… the actual work that the electorate–for some reason–thought he would be doing when they sent him to Washington, as opposed to spending all day on the golf course or in front of microphones.
“With great power comes great responsibility.” Comic books have known this since at least 1962 (the year Spider-Man debuted). Apparently Barack Obama hasn’t caught on to that yet.