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Back on the Campaign Trail

January 26, 2010

The President is turning up the campaign heat:

“I’d rather be a really good one-term president than a mediocre two-term president,” he told ABC’s “World News” anchor Diane Sawyer in an exclusive interview today.


“You know, there is a tendency in Washington to believe our job description, of elected officials, is to get reelected. That’s not our job description,” Obama said. “Our job description is to solve problems and to help people.”

He does know he’s already the President, right?  Ah, but we’re talking November now.  I see:

The president said the setbacks suffered by politicians in Washington are “nothing compared to the setbacks of a guy who loses his job… He’s sending out 100 resumes and he’s not getting any answers back and his wife and kids are at home and he’s thinking, am I going to be able to make sure that mortgage payments get made? Am I going to be able to afford to keep my health insurance? … They get up every day, they go out for that next interview and they keep on interviewing until they find a job. Those are the people who inspire me.”

Well, that’s definitely a better shtick to have in the face of rampant populism than his whole Wall-Street-needs-to-pay thing.  There’s that tricky problem, though, of who this will actually appeal to.  The middle-class voters who thought he should have “focused on jobs” (whatever that means) instead of pursuing health-care reform right out of the gate?  That makes sense, and also meshes well with the spending freeze plan, but I would certainly expect some volcanic eruptions from the most prominent voices on the Left.  Take Paul Krugman, for example:

It’s bad long-run fiscal policy, shifting attention away from the essential need to reform health care and focusing on small change instead.

And it’s a betrayal of everything Obama’s supporters thought they were working for. Just like that, Obama has embraced and validated the Republican world-view — and more specifically, he has embraced the policy ideas of the man he defeated in 2008. A correspondent writes, “I feel like an idiot for supporting this guy.”

No surprise there.  Looks like we’re in campaign mode for the long haul.  Can we just fast-forward to November 3?

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