His public speeches are pure politics. If you can’t see that, your media of choice has left you hopelessly misinformed. He’s only trying to save one job, and that is his.
In President Barack Obama’s sales pitch for his jobs bill, there are two versions of reality: The one in his speeches and the one actually unfolding in Washington.
When Obama accuses Republicans of standing in the way of his nearly $450 billion plan, he ignores the fact that his own party has struggled to unite behind the proposal.
When the president says Republicans haven’t explained what they oppose in the plan, he skips over the fact that Republicans who control the House actually have done that in detail.
And when he calls on Congress to “pass this bill now,” he slides past the point that Democrats control the Senate and were never prepared to move immediately, given other priorities. Senators are expected to vote Tuesday on opening debate on the bill, a month after the president unveiled it with a call for its immediate passage.
To be sure, Obama is not the only one engaging in rhetorical excesses. But he is the president, and as such, his constant remarks on the bill draw the most attention and scrutiny.
The disconnect between what Obama says about his jobs bill and what stands as the political reality flow from his broader aim: to rally the public behind his cause and get Congress to act, or, if not, to pin blame on Republicans.
He is waging a campaign, one in which nuance and context and competing responses don’t always fit in if they don’t help make the case.