Wednesday, June 17, 2009

Quiet Down. Stay Patient. Support the President

The near unanimous vote by house republicans against short-term funding for the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan show how much the GOP is willing to risk in their effort to disparage, discredit and destroy Obama.

While they explained their opposition to the $106 billion bill because of a provision which included financing for the International Monetary Fund, typically republicans would never leave themselves vulnerable to charges of deserting our troops.

Combine this with Republican criticism of the President’s restrained remarks on the Iran election – a response dictated by diplomatic considerations and approved by foreign policy operatives left to right – and it’s increasingly apparent that republicans are positioned to fight just about everything which comes from this administration.

Health care reform, financial re-regulation, green energy, Sotomayor - all hang in the balance. This is an absolutely pivotal period when Obama must demonstrate that he can defeat congressional republicans and win these battles.

I disagree with my friends who earnestly believe that the Prez needs pressure from the left on gay rights, labor law reform, troop withdrawal and other critical issues. This is not a good time for the administration to have to contend with division and distraction.

It won’t be easy. Single-payer advocates must be genuinely offended when Obama rejects the approach and then uses that position to showcase his independence from progressives.

But please remember, this is not Bill Clinton triangulating. This is the boldest and broadest effort at progressive change since LBJ (yes, LBJ).

The republicans are playing for all the marbles. They’re good at it.

So quiet down. Stay patient. Support the president.

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