In case anyone was wondering what even members of congress from the president's own party think of him, this op-ed appearing in The Hill by California congressman Dennis Cardoza (D) might be an eye opener:
After observing President Obama for the last three years, it has become obvious to me that the President might prefer to be a university professor rather than do the job he holds today. While he may not realize that he feels this way, the evidence is very clear to those who work with or watch him closely.
In the President's first year in office, his administration suffered from what I call "idea disease." Every week, and sometimes almost every day, the administration rolled out a new program for the country. There was no obvious prioritization and, after the rollout, very little effort to actually pass the latest idea/imperative/plan/edict.
Instead, the new programs just kept coming, with the new proposals constantly stepping on the previous day's message. This rampant "idea disease" squandered the tremendous goodwill generated by the Obama campaign's message of "hope," tainting the President's personal appeal. As Democrats in Congress, we often felt like we were drinking water out of a fire hose, trying to simultaneously deal with past failures of the Bush administration and the avalanche of new initiatives from Obama. This lack of focus also made it easy for Congressional Republicans to stall and foil many of President Obama's best initiatives -- which they did with relish!
Early in his administration, President/Professor Obama repeatedly referred to "teaching moments." He would admonish staff, members of Congress and the public, in speeches and in private, about what they could learn from him. Rather than the ideological or corrupt "I'm above the law" attitudes of some past administrations, President Obama projected an arrogant "I'm right, you're wrong" demeanor that alienated many potential allies. Furthermore, the President concentrated power within the White House, leaving cabinet members with no other option but to dutifully carry out policies with which they had limited input in crafting and might very well disagree. From my experience, this was especially true in the environmental, resources, housing and employment areas. Not by coincidence, these areas have also been responsible for much of the President's harshest critiques.
Cardoza continues by criticizing the president for "lecturing" rather than listening and confirms what some insiders have been whispering about the White House for years; they are out of touch with ordinary people and Obama refuses to reach out to anyone not inside the beltway.
I've stated before that some of my long time acquaintances on the Hill have told me that the Obama congressional liaison shop is the absolute worst they've seen - and one of these correspondents has been working on the Hill since the 1970's. Read the rest of that Cardoza piece and you'll understand why.