Poor Barack Obama.
For him, campaigning is “fun.” But for the last few months, almost nobody has wanted to play with him.
He was only invited to campaign for one Democrat running for the U.S. Senate, and that was for a candidate with an insurmountable lead. (Gary Peters in Michigan.)
His public schedule through Tuesday showed that he hadn’t made a public appearance since last Friday. He was conspicuously absent in the days leading up to, and including, Election Day.
After all, at every turn he hurt them by linking them to him and his policies, and therefore to his unpopularity. It was as if he couldn’t help himself in making the election about him despite the old saw that “all politics is local.” Democrats wish it had been more true this year.
In a generic way, he tied the “political millstone” to Democrats across the country a month ago when he said, “I am not on the ballot this fall.… But make no mistake: These policies are on the ballot. Every single one of them.”
And two weeks ago, when asked why he wasn’t being invited to campaign for Democratic Senate hopefuls, Obama suggested that his presence would boost GOP turnout but added helpfully (to Republicans, that is), “The bottom line is, though, these are all folks who vote with me; they have supported my agenda in Congress.… These are folks who are strong allies and supporters of me, and I tell them, I said, ‘You know what, you do what you need to do to win.’”
As if “my supporters are not just bad on policy, but they’re liars, too” is a winning political message.
In a specific way in a critical race, the president torpedoed Georgia’s Democratic Senate candidate during a recent telephone interview by saying, “If Michelle Nunn wins, that means that Democrats keep control of the Senate.” I can just imagine Nunn’s reaction: With friends like Obama, who needs Republicans campaigning against me?
The problem, as everybody now knows, is that President Obama is all about fun. He loves his golf (even hitting the links a few minutes after discussing the beheading of an American by ISIS). He’s played over 200 rounds so far during his presidency. He loves being the center of attention in Hollywood and Manhattan, fêted by Gwyneth Paltrow and Sarah Jessica Parker and Barbra Streisand and Jeffrey Katzenberg, surrounded by adoring throngs, while basking in his power to open liberals’ checkbooks.
Unfortunately, for him and for us, he is the president of the United States, not of Toastmasters International or even of the Fort Belvoir golf course. And the presidency happens to be a job that requires actual work, preferably with focus and competence of which the public now understands he has neither.
He wants all credit but will shoulder no blame, even in demonstrable failure. He demands obedience but offers no hand of friendship or assistance, even to those within his own party. His unwillingness to support allies or punish enemies extends perilously into foreign policy, as leaders in Tel Aviv and Tehran know all too well.
Because, didn’t you know, Barack is all about Barack. The rest of you Democrats are bit players, extras, add-ons, in the feature presentation that is The One. And he demands not only the Oscar for Best Actor — to go along with his undeserved Nobel Peace Prize — but also for Best Director, Best Screenplay, and Best Stupid Golf Leg Move. You, his supporter at the ballot box or in Congress or the fawning media, are lucky just to be able to say His name.
Democrats realize it now — that, as with another former community organizer named Jim Jones, followers are expendable — but it’s too late for them despite Harry Reid’s best efforts to shield them from tough votes and cast Republicans as obstructionists when Reid himself is the source of American electoral constipation.
Poor Barack. He was kept away from every important race and most unimportant ones. How hard that must be for a man with an ego so large that it makes most Hollywood movie stars look modest.
How frustrating for someone who embodies the clinical definition of narcissism, including “Those with narcissistic personality disorder believe that they’re superior to others and have little regard for other people’s feelings. But behind this mask of ultra-confidence lies a fragile self-esteem, vulnerable to the slightest criticism.”
How difficult for a man whose every speech is replete with first person pronouns.
How unacceptable for the candidate whose nomination was to presage the end of every ill from poverty to rising seas. (Seriously, was that not the most politically narcissistic comment since “L’État, c’est moi”?)
How humiliating for the Democrats’ hopey-changey rock star, now not even fit to be a roadie for the warm-up band.
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