It appears the scrum over education funding between President Obama and congressional Democrats is just the beginning of many Clintonesque "Sister Souljah" moments for Obama, as he tries to move to the center (and in some cases, to the center-right) going into the 2012 presidential election. On immigration, the Obama administration has stepped up "silent raids" in which federal agents conduct audits of employers' records for illegal immigrant workers, among other immigration law enforcement activities. Another example: Treasury Secretary Geithner recently said the administration hopes to keep most of the Bush investment tax cuts in place, with the top tax rate on dividends and capital gains rising from the current 15 percent to no more than 20 percent. Obama's bipartisan deficit reduction commission is rumored to be considering reforms to Social Security -- including a gradual increase in the retirement age for future retirees -- that would put the New Deal program on a more fiscally sustainable path. All of these moves are good general election politics for the president and good policy for the country. But it remains to be seen whether Obama's core liberal base will allow him to move this far to the right on domestic issues.
How's this for change we can believe in?
Scapegoating teachers, raising the bottom tax rate from 10% to 15% so that the Bush tax cuts for the rich can stay in place, raising the age requirement for Social Security because the system is "bankrupt" (it's not - see here), and arresting more illegal immigrants than the Bush administration.
Obama loves to frame every issue these days - from education to immigration to Social Security - by using right wing talking points.
Call the White House and tell them what you think of these policies and they're talking points
I bet they're going to be a little more open to liberals not voting for them after seeing polls like these.
First there's the latest ABC News/WaPo/Kaplan Test Prep poll:
A new ABC News/Washington Post poll shows President Obama hit a record low in terms of public confidence in his job performance. Only 43% of Americans are confident in the job he is doing according to the poll.
Next there's the latest Bloomberg poll (the media outlet, not the Mayor4Life and potential 2102 candidate):
And the latest CBS poll:
More than 7 out of 10 in the U.S. say the economy is mired in recession, and the country is conflicted over how to balance concerns over joblessness and the federal budget deficit, according to a Bloomberg National Poll.
Four months ahead of the midterm congressional elections, the poll’s results show a challenging climate for Democrats. The public mood is bleak, with 63 percent saying they believe the country is on the wrong track, the most negative reading of Obama’s presidency. After a year of economic growth, 71 percent say the economy is still in recession; another 13 percent say the economy is faltering and will dip back into recession.
Only 1 in 6 say they believe they are personally better off than they were 18 months ago, when President Barack Obama took office. They are more apt to see the economy today as deteriorating than improving.
A majority of Americans have a negative impression of the economy and expect the effects of the recession to linger for years, according to a new CBS News poll.
Most also say President Obama has spent too little time on the economy, which Americans cite as the country's most important problem by a wide margin.
The president's overall approval rating now stands at 44 percent, matching his disapproval rating. It stood at 47 percent last month.
Finally, the latest Public Policy poll:
The latest Public Policy Polling survey shows President Obama's approval rating hit a new low this month with just 45% of voters approving of the job he's doing while 52% disapprove.
Analysis: "The two most troublesome things for Obama in his numbers at this point are his standing among white voters and independents. Whites now disapprove of Obama by nearly a 2:1 margin, with 62% giving him bad marks and only 35% saying he's doing a good job. With independents his approval is just 40% and 56% disapprove of his performance."
So Obama's moving to the right to win back whites and independents.
Is that a smart strategy?
It is if he can count on liberals voting for him no matter what.
Which is why I say call the bastards and tell 'em just what you think about the Sistah Souljah policies, especially regarding teachers.
They're taking teachers for granted because they think they can (and Randi probably tells them behind the scenes, after she wipes the Bill Gates slobber off her cheeks, that they can.)
Tell them they CANNOT take us for granted.
May not change their strategy, but at least it should give them pause.
White House Contact:
phone: Comments: 202-456-1111