On MSNBC’s Rachel Maddow Show, host Rachel Maddow traced President Barack Obama’s efforts towards political unity. She examined all of Obama’s failed bi-partisan efforts, and concluded that Obama is going to have change his strategy because he is going to get zero Republican support.
Here is the video:
After pointing out that Republicans are changing their stated policy views to disagree with Obama, Maddow said, “Republicans have been as unanimous as they can be in opposition to every major thing this president has tried to do and they expect to continue to be as best as I can tell, calculating that the political benefit of stopping a president from accomplishing anything is worth a lot more than any risk of being seen as obstructionist.”
Maddow moved on to Obama’s first year, “Barack Obama’s first year in office has been a real challenge to his whole political brand, to his baseline appeal, to the thing that made him popular in the first place. The reason the hope slogan worked and didn’t seem cynical, and the reason for all the often difficult, but earnest discussion of whether his was a post racial candidacy is because of President Obama’s constant message of what unites us is stronger than what divides us, that may be true in the country at large. I hope it’s true. It’s really not true in Washington though.”
She concluded that in order for the Democrats to get things done, they are going to need a strategy that counts on no Republican votes. This type of maneuver goes counter what Obama built his brand on, but the fate of his presidency may rest on whether or not he can get things done.
Maddow hit the nail on the head. One of the biggest transitions that all new presidents face is move from campaigning to governing. What got Obama elected was a message of hope and bi-partisanship. He can keep the hope, but he is going to have to abandon the idea of bi-partisanship. Obama’s success or failure is going to depend on how quickly he can implement a strategy for effective governance.