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October 25, 2010

NYT Slaps Obama For Failure to Reach Across the Aisle. (Sigh.)


“Can Obama meaningfully reach out to the Republicans after November 2nd?” “Is Obama really ready to engage in bipartisanship?”

The “White House Memo” column fronting Monday morning’s NYT (Obama’s Playbook After Nov. 2) is simply mind-boggling. It paints a picture of Obama as unwilling to work with the GOP, leading off with the assertion it took the President eighteen months to formally engage Republican Senate honcho, Mitch McConnell.  Has Obama’s “post-partisan” obsession simply vanished from the memory banks? As a memo to the author, Ms. Stolberg, Mr. Obama has been practically licking Mr. McConnell’s boots not just regularly, but fresh out of the gate as documented by the pictures we’ve been running  almost since the inauguration.

Take the image above, for example. As early as two months into his term (see: “Catering to the Right“) Obama has publicly been soliciting McConnell. (This photo, by the way, was taken four days after Obama had all those GOP Congresspeople to the White House, if anyone remembers that. …You know, it was that session where the members got in the new president’s face, and then collected autographs from “The One” for the folks back home.)

And its been the same  for most of the past two years. This shot, for example — part of an usual pair of back-to-back Obama/McConnell shots on the White House Flickr stream (see: White House Flickr Stream: Professional Right In, Professional Left Out) appeared as recently as two months ago. Once again,the theme is reaching out, reaching out, reaching out … and McConnell, McConnell, McConnell.

Fiscal Responsibility Summit.jpg

Oh, and by the way, here’s the shot we ran back on February 23, 2009 (from: Bipartisanship, Continued) at still another “White House attempts kumbaya” session.  (Apparently, no one remembers the attempted “Fiscal Responsibility Summit,” either.) My association at the time, given the icy reception, was that the tops of the chairs looked like brass knuckles.

But then, come this November 3rd, is it really possible Obama might somehow, finally, find it in him to reach out the good Mr. McConnell? Ms. Stolberg is anxious to know.

(10/25 11:45pm PST – slightly revised)

(images: Pete Souza/White House)

  • thirdeye pushpin

    Obama may be Deminted after the 2nd…mitch as well

  • matt

    did obama have to wear a straight white tie instead of a black bow tie, favored by everyone else, so he wouldn’t be confused with “the help”?

  • jmac

    If Obama moves the party any further right, he needs to put an R behind his name.

    As Lindsay Graham said, “Ronald Reagan would have a hard time getting elected as a Republican today.” And Graham should know, he was frantic to get the Energy bill on the table before Fox could hound him about Cap and Trade. And it didn’t happen – And Democrats got the blame. The Energy bill wasn’t going to get a Republican vote in the end – just like health care.

    It’s Crazy!! Bush had a razor thin Senate and got just about anything he wanted through. (the exception – privatizing Social Security). Maybe we need a razor thin majority and the old rule of 50 plus the tie-breaking VP. The good old days.

  • boomerangst

    I’m thinking we live in bizarro world where up is down and black is white. Can’t wait for the republicans to get a majority in the house so they can become the whipping boys.

  • serr8d

    Can’t see where you get the notion that BHO is ‘reaching across the aisle’. After yesterday’s speech where he told Republicans to “sit in the back” [of the bus], there’s not much hope for any of that going forward.

    Oh, and we don’t really want to be associated with President Cloward-Piven.

  • mroben

    I find the featured photo particularly interesting. The racial dynamics could not be more clear. McConnell looks self-assured while the frustrated President tries to explain something to him. Justice Roberts smiles smugly as is the privilege of the real Masters of the Universe. While the only other non-white face in the photo looks around to make sure everyone has enough water. McConnell’s thinking: Why isn’t Obama making sure my drink is fresh?

  • donviti

    this is strange and I am unable to process this article. It doesn’t seem to jive with the NY times being a Liberal magazine.

    I’m so confused by this.

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