It's 2012 on Obama's calendar

Why waste time on trivial issues like the national debt and a government shutdown when campaign speeches beckon from tarmac to teleprompter?

The President told John Boehner and Harry Reid on Tuesday that if they can't agree "I want them back here tomorrow."  Only problem is, Obama will not be home if they come calling.

On Monday the President announced the kickoff to his 2012 campaign, and today he is jetting off to Philadelphia to promote green jobs at a "plant owned by Spanish windmill producer Gamesa," a campaign stop characterized by American Spectator's Chris Horner as "tilting at windmills again"

Then he is off to New York City, for a Rev. Al Sharpton event.  The Wall Street Journal reports that "the White House said there is no connection between Mr. Obama's 2012 campaign and his decision to attend the National Action Network's annual convention." 

But it sure beats sitting in the hot seat.

Ronald Reagan famously changed the 1980 debate by asking Americans "are you better off now than you were four years ago?" 

With record deficits, persistent unemployment, near-record gas prices, a middle east in turmoil, and a nation divided over ObamaCare, who is better off now?

And so the President begins with shoring up the base to recreate 2008.

A CBS news analyst comments on the Obama campaign kickoff video:

What's interesting about the video the president put out is, he's barely in it... There are only images of him from before 2008. It's all about the movement. All about those people who gathered in 2008 and walked the precincts and signed up their friends. And that's what the campaign is trying to rekindle again, is that feeling of 2008.

While the President leaves by the side door on a campaign swing, the theatre surrounding the budget impasse heats up, as Fox News reports:

House Speaker John Boehner says: The president is certainly entitled to disagree with our budget, but what exactly is his alternative? If he wants to have an ‘adult conversation' about solving our fiscal challenges, he needs to lead instead of sitting on the sidelines.

The President then goes "to the press room to rip Boehner for playing ‘games' with the process and ‘quibbling around the edges' of the nation's fiscal problems."

Boehner responds that "Republicans would not be ‘put into a box' by the president" and that "Democrats are using ‘smoke and mirrors' to create the false appearance of spending cuts."

Speaker Boehner has now proposed a further one-week budget extension including an additional $12 billion in cuts.  As Fox notes:

That proposal was quickly dismissed by the White House, but shifted the balance of power on the shutdown debate. Now, Democrats are refusing a Republican plan to keep the government open without a counter offer.

But the President has a campaign to conduct.

Another Fox News report speculates that a government shutdown could lead to unionized federal employees staging Wisconsin-style demonstrations, leaving the President with the unpalatable choice of defending "the hardships of well-paid federal workers."

How much easier it is for the dreamer-in-chief to stump about green jobs and economic justice than it is to face reality in the Oval Office.

How much easier for Obama to woo the crowds and lead the chants than to face the grim choices and hard decisions expected of the Chief Executive.

In the wistful lament of the old pop standard:

"Make the world go away...
Say the things you used to say"

Why waste time on trivial issues like the national debt and a government shutdown when campaign speeches beckon from tarmac to teleprompter?

The President told John Boehner and Harry Reid on Tuesday that if they can't agree "I want them back here tomorrow."  Only problem is, Obama will not be home if they come calling.

On Monday the President announced the kickoff to his 2012 campaign, and today he is jetting off to Philadelphia to promote green jobs at a "plant owned by Spanish windmill producer Gamesa," a campaign stop characterized by American Spectator's Chris Horner as "tilting at windmills again"

Then he is off to New York City, for a Rev. Al Sharpton event.  The Wall Street Journal reports that "the White House said there is no connection between Mr. Obama's 2012 campaign and his decision to attend the National Action Network's annual convention." 

But it sure beats sitting in the hot seat.

Ronald Reagan famously changed the 1980 debate by asking Americans "are you better off now than you were four years ago?" 

With record deficits, persistent unemployment, near-record gas prices, a middle east in turmoil, and a nation divided over ObamaCare, who is better off now?

And so the President begins with shoring up the base to recreate 2008.

A CBS news analyst comments on the Obama campaign kickoff video:

What's interesting about the video the president put out is, he's barely in it... There are only images of him from before 2008. It's all about the movement. All about those people who gathered in 2008 and walked the precincts and signed up their friends. And that's what the campaign is trying to rekindle again, is that feeling of 2008.

While the President leaves by the side door on a campaign swing, the theatre surrounding the budget impasse heats up, as Fox News reports:

House Speaker John Boehner says: The president is certainly entitled to disagree with our budget, but what exactly is his alternative? If he wants to have an ‘adult conversation' about solving our fiscal challenges, he needs to lead instead of sitting on the sidelines.

The President then goes "to the press room to rip Boehner for playing ‘games' with the process and ‘quibbling around the edges' of the nation's fiscal problems."

Boehner responds that "Republicans would not be ‘put into a box' by the president" and that "Democrats are using ‘smoke and mirrors' to create the false appearance of spending cuts."

Speaker Boehner has now proposed a further one-week budget extension including an additional $12 billion in cuts.  As Fox notes:

That proposal was quickly dismissed by the White House, but shifted the balance of power on the shutdown debate. Now, Democrats are refusing a Republican plan to keep the government open without a counter offer.

But the President has a campaign to conduct.

Another Fox News report speculates that a government shutdown could lead to unionized federal employees staging Wisconsin-style demonstrations, leaving the President with the unpalatable choice of defending "the hardships of well-paid federal workers."

How much easier it is for the dreamer-in-chief to stump about green jobs and economic justice than it is to face reality in the Oval Office.

How much easier for Obama to woo the crowds and lead the chants than to face the grim choices and hard decisions expected of the Chief Executive.

In the wistful lament of the old pop standard:

"Make the world go away...
Say the things you used to say"

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