A reader writes that she and other progressives have been let down by President Obama and goes on to list a number of broken promises made during the ’08 campaign. Diana McGinness responds with a message well worth the read.
1) if anyone thought Obama was anything but a centrist when they voted for him, that was their unfortunate mistake. It was clear to me he was not the Progressive we wanted, nor was Clinton. This country is not ready to elect a progressive yet. And that’s our fault. We need to educate.
2) Gitmo is still there because of the GOP, not Obama – he tried – I remember well the complete and utter outrage of people like Rep Peter King.
3) you include the privatization of Medicare and SS in your list of failures — I’m pretty up on these things and have no information supporting that. If you do, please share it with us.
4) probably his most important campaign “promise” was to change the rhetoric in D.C. — he tried – and tried and tried — much to the dismay of all of us thinking, just forget it , they will NOT cooperate. And, in fact, they turned that promise against him deliberately — you hear them every day go on about how he was supposed to change Washington? They made the conscious decision to NOT allow that to happen. So brandishing the “hopey changey” thing that Palin spouts is something we should not buy into. When we accept their rhetoric, THEY win. And we’re really good at doing just that. I even hear Democrats call it the “Democrat” Party. It just makes me want to scream when we do this.
5) yes, mistakes were made – what did you expect from a two year Senator not even dry behind the ears when he took over the oval office? His biggest mistake was doing what all Presidents do (and Romney is doing now) choosing advisor from Clinton’s administration. He should have pulled people in from the outside…but the problem with that is that they, too, would not have had an understanding of D.C. politics. So he relied on Clinton’s old group – people like Larry Summers, who should have been kicked to the curb without a thought. The smartest move he made was getting Biden on the ticket – he’d been in the Senate long enough to know the ropes and to have built the relationships that were needed — but even that didn’t help because the GOP REFUSED to lift a finger to help Obama get this country righted again.
6) and when the Tea Party won the House in 2010 – just what was he supposed to do? We sat home and let them take the House – we didn’t have his back. You can blame him, but it was us who gave up. We stomped our feet and got mad because we didn’t get single payer (and as much as i wanted it, it was NEVER going to happen – nor was the Public Option ever going to get through the Senate). If you will recall ACA only passed using reconciliation, not with 60 votes, but with 56 – we’d lost Teddy by then and our Blue Dogs abandoned us.
I’m shocked he’s managed to get as much done as he has, albeit much of major legislation like Dodd-Frank watered down. But they are a foundation upon which to build. And a second administration will give him four more years to accomplish much more. All that needed done could not be done in four years. He’s laid the foundation for more to come. And, like you, I’m willing to give it to him…even with the disappointments. Let’s hope he can rectify some of that with 4 more years! Which is exactly why Wall Street is scared shitless he will be re-elected and the vast majority of them are sending their money to Romney.
Let’s not, however, accept the GOPs revisionist history as our own.