As a prisoner of his base, Obama won't change much

You would think any president would see the results from a blowout midterm election, where his party lost control of the Senate and several governorships in states he carried easily in his re-election, and be humbled by the results.  You might even think he'd change course and try to work with the opposition to get things done.

In Obama's case, you would be wrong.

Politico:

Voters demanded change from Washington on Tuesday, and Republicans say it’s now up to President Barack Obama to deliver it.

But don’t count on that happening.

The White House that emerges after the midterm elections won’t look, act or sound drastically different than the one battered for months by Republicans and abandoned by Democrats desperate to hang onto power. The president will seek some common ground with Republicans, but there are limits to how far Obama wants to go — and Senate Democrats will let him go.

Despite losing the Senate, Obama doesn’t think too much should be read into election results from a handful of states that never approved of his job performance in the first place. Obama acknowledges that he needs to do better, and he will make modest adjustments to his staffing, messaging and legislative strategy in response. But he won’t pivot to the right, as he did after his self-proclaimed shellacking in 2010, White House officials said in interviews this week.

Obama will strike a tone of compromise and accountability during his public remarks Wednesday, promising to work with Republicans who are interested in working with him. He’s gone almost two years without a major legislative achievement, leaving him “very willing” to start cutting deals, a senior administration official said, possibly on trade, corporate taxes and patent reform. Still, this posture isn’t much different than the one he’s projected for years.

At the same time, Obama won’t back down from using his administrative powers, including plans to issue an executive order on immigration that could be the most aggressive unilateral action of his presidency. He’ll adhere to a progressive agenda that, officials said, will keep the base excited, position his party to win back the Senate and hold the White House in 2016, and seal his legacy. And he will continue to use the bully pulpit to promote liberal issues, such as stemming climate change, that stand no chance of passing Congress on his watch but might under his successor.

“You can’t lose your base,” a second senior administration official said. “There are policy things we are going to have to support where the base isn’t there. But you’ve got to keep your eye on your base.”

There, in a nutshell, is the president's problem.  The "policy things" the president is going to accomplish with the stroke of his pen are going to please his base but prove wildly unpopular with the rest of the electorate.  But he is a prisoner of liberals and needs to continue to cater to their whims, as to do otherwise would smash his coalition.  The structural problems of this coalition, which is made up of people who want something from government and support expanding Washington's power to get it, reflect a disconnect with the rest of the American people, who clearly think Washington has already overreached and the president overstepped his authority.

He doesn't care if his numbers keep falling.  He doesn't care if he becomes an irrelvancy.  The next two years are going to see a delusional president continuing to act as if he's the same Lightworker who was elected in 2008.

The danger is obvious.  There is potentially no greater obstructionist in government than the president.  It will be very difficult to override his expected vetos of most of the GOP agenda, and with his liberal base cheering him on, he will continue to act with impunity – tweaking Obamacare, granting amnesty to illegals that is not his to grant, and enacting through executive fiat anything he feels he can't get through Congress.

It's a recipe for disaster both here and abroad.

 

 

 

You would think any president would see the results from a blowout midterm election, where his party lost control of the Senate and several governorships in states he carried easily in his re-election, and be humbled by the results.  You might even think he'd change course and try to work with the opposition to get things done.

In Obama's case, you would be wrong.

Politico:

Voters demanded change from Washington on Tuesday, and Republicans say it’s now up to President Barack Obama to deliver it.

But don’t count on that happening.

The White House that emerges after the midterm elections won’t look, act or sound drastically different than the one battered for months by Republicans and abandoned by Democrats desperate to hang onto power. The president will seek some common ground with Republicans, but there are limits to how far Obama wants to go — and Senate Democrats will let him go.

Despite losing the Senate, Obama doesn’t think too much should be read into election results from a handful of states that never approved of his job performance in the first place. Obama acknowledges that he needs to do better, and he will make modest adjustments to his staffing, messaging and legislative strategy in response. But he won’t pivot to the right, as he did after his self-proclaimed shellacking in 2010, White House officials said in interviews this week.

Obama will strike a tone of compromise and accountability during his public remarks Wednesday, promising to work with Republicans who are interested in working with him. He’s gone almost two years without a major legislative achievement, leaving him “very willing” to start cutting deals, a senior administration official said, possibly on trade, corporate taxes and patent reform. Still, this posture isn’t much different than the one he’s projected for years.

At the same time, Obama won’t back down from using his administrative powers, including plans to issue an executive order on immigration that could be the most aggressive unilateral action of his presidency. He’ll adhere to a progressive agenda that, officials said, will keep the base excited, position his party to win back the Senate and hold the White House in 2016, and seal his legacy. And he will continue to use the bully pulpit to promote liberal issues, such as stemming climate change, that stand no chance of passing Congress on his watch but might under his successor.

“You can’t lose your base,” a second senior administration official said. “There are policy things we are going to have to support where the base isn’t there. But you’ve got to keep your eye on your base.”

There, in a nutshell, is the president's problem.  The "policy things" the president is going to accomplish with the stroke of his pen are going to please his base but prove wildly unpopular with the rest of the electorate.  But he is a prisoner of liberals and needs to continue to cater to their whims, as to do otherwise would smash his coalition.  The structural problems of this coalition, which is made up of people who want something from government and support expanding Washington's power to get it, reflect a disconnect with the rest of the American people, who clearly think Washington has already overreached and the president overstepped his authority.

He doesn't care if his numbers keep falling.  He doesn't care if he becomes an irrelvancy.  The next two years are going to see a delusional president continuing to act as if he's the same Lightworker who was elected in 2008.

The danger is obvious.  There is potentially no greater obstructionist in government than the president.  It will be very difficult to override his expected vetos of most of the GOP agenda, and with his liberal base cheering him on, he will continue to act with impunity – tweaking Obamacare, granting amnesty to illegals that is not his to grant, and enacting through executive fiat anything he feels he can't get through Congress.

It's a recipe for disaster both here and abroad.