In his weekly radio address, President Obama stated: “Every problem we face is within our power to solve; what’s lacking is our politics.” In Obama’s view, our politics are lacking because Congress hasn’t agreed to all aspects of a job bill he introduced. It’s a curious view of politics that measures success by the willingness of the opposition to capitulate to the full program of a president whom the American people don’t trust on the economy.
Obama noted that Republicans want to wait until after the November electiions to tackle the problem of the economy. If Republicans believed that Obama’s program has merit, it would be deplorable to wait for elections to pass it. But Republicans are opposed to his program on policy and philosophic grounds. Thus, they are hardly playing “politics” by not supporting it. Obama cynically equates legitimate policy disagreements with bad faith. He might just as well have declared a state of “national malaise.”
Obama also claimed that Republicans “haven’t lifted a finger” for job creation. This is nonsense. As Erika Johnsen at Hot Air points out, House Republicans, the only ones with the power to “lift a finger,” have pushed an agenda that conservatives believe would jump start the economy and thereby produce jobs. It includes reducing the tax and regulatory burden on businesses, promoting free trade, maximizing the production of domestic energy, and substantially reducing federal spending in order to control the deficit.
Democrats don’t believe in these policies and thus do not support them. This doesn’t mean they are playing “politics” and neither does Republican opposition to Obama’s prescription for job creation approach — the expansion of government, in essence.
But Obama has played politics of the most irreponsible kind. He has done so by proposing budgets so ridiculous that they failed to gain a single vote. Obama did so because he wanted House Republicans to make the first serious budget cutting proposal. And he wanted Republicans to do so, so that Democrats could shoot at the cuts, mainly by trying to scare old people.
This is politics in the bad sense. In fact, it is an abdication of Obama’s responsibility as president. The president’s job is less about opining on confrontations with the police in Cambridge, Massachusetts or making pretty speeches around the world, and more about presenting a responsible proposal about how the government will spend money and how it will address a debt problem that threatens the national well-being and security.
The president’s failure to perform this duty should disqualify him from accusing otherwise of playing politics. It should also disqualify him from serious consideration for another term in the office he is abusing.