My fellow Americans: It is the best of times, it is the worst of times. Times that try men’s souls; therefore, ask not what your country can do for you but what you can do for your country, because I have a dream!
I’m not sure what magic words President Obama could use to turn the nation (and Congress) to side with him, but perhaps a few of these catchy sound bites might help.
The truth is that we’re currently standing in the ticket line waiting for one of the biggest title fights yet to grace the American political arena. In one corner you have the bipartisan conservative coalition, composed of hundreds of lawmakers, businesses and concerned citizens. In the other corner stands Barack “the Boy Wonder” Obama, the White House with all its P.R. might and many supportive liberals. Obama has been gearing up his push for a health care solution by promoting his agenda via his Web site, television and Internet broadcasts and his famous town hall meetings.
As polls show that a plurality of Americans disapprove of Obama’s handling of health care reform, Mr. President will be hard pressed to salvage his presidency if concessions aren’t made soon. The Democratic majorities in both the House and Senate have provided him with the unique possibility to ramrod legislation down America’s windpipe. Yet when one of your key points of reform is being halted by Republicans and Democrats alike, it’s worth considering that perhaps Obama isn’t up to snuff to get this job done. Is this Barack’s political demise?
The President (obviously) doesn’t think so. He told CBS as much in a recent interview: “There have been so many times, during my political career … where people have said, ‘Boy, this is make or break for Obama,’” he said. “When the stock market went down everybody was saying, ‘This is a disaster.’ And what I found is that as long as we are making good decisions, thinking always what’s … best for the American people, that, eventually, as long as we’re persistent and we’re listening to the American people, that things get done.”
This would reassure me except for one little caveat: He doesn’t really have a political career. If you honestly think about it, Barack Obama was virtual unknown three years ago. He didn’t even make it through one term as Senator before he began his push for the Presidency. There is hardly any record of his efforts outside the national limelight to address the issues that he is facing today. In my honest opinion, it’s hard to see what exactly qualifies this man to be the centerpiece of the face lift of American domestic policy as we know it. Sure, he mounted one of the most successful campaigns for the presidency in American history but, now that he’s in and working, what has he accomplished of real merit?
Obama may be able to flood the Internet, television and radio with messages about how his plans for health care reform will be a blessing to the U.S. but, when all is said and done, I think you’ll find that the American people have recently “woken up,” politically speaking, and are recognizing the fact that the president may not be correct. Is this the Waterloo of Barack’s presidency? You decide.
Jess Jones is a conservative political columnist for Rhombus. He is also vice chair of the BYU College Republicans, much to his editor’s chagrin.
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