By Nancy Churchill
A Progressive Visionary
“It’s all Barack Obama’s fault!” right-leaning pundits thunder on the eve of the inaugural, warning of sinister plans for Republicans coming up.
Obama is responsible for their losses, if not their very ideology, goes the narrative, because, of course, Republicans couldn’t possibly have failed on their own.
Charles Krauthammer (Fox News, Dec. 27, 2012) credits Obama with ruthlessly and intentionally shattering Republican opposition. “His objective from the very beginning was to break the will of the Republicans in the House, and to create an internal civil war. And he’s done that,” he said.
Obama is “tempted by a shiny political object: the destruction of the congressional GOP,” according to Michael Gerson (Washington Post, Jan. 14, 2013). Since he “knows that Republicans are forced by the momentum of their ideology to take positions on spending that he can easily demagogue” (say what?) … “[h]e is in a good position … to expose their internal divisions and unpopular policy views.”
Translation: Obama is not only responsible that Republicans’ policy views are unpopular, he is diabolical for exploiting their helplessness in the face of the momentum of their unpopular ideology!
David Brooks (New York Times, Jan. 17, 2013) predicts a new Democratic strategy: to “Kill the Wounded” going forward. They should, he said, “force Republicans to cast an awful vote: either [to] offend mainstream supporters or risk a primary challenge from the right,” and thereby take the House in 2014.
Sorry, you’ve got the wrong guy. You attribute to Obama the same sentiment expressed by Mitch McConnell (National Journal, Oct. 23, 2010), who actually said the words, “The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president.”
Obama never said anything like that, but because the right never saw him as fit to be president in the first place, their current implosion must somehow be all his doing.
The guilty party is in your mirror, Republicans. After you refused to extend the Violence Against Women Act, pass the Dream Act or a jobs bill; tried to obstruct health care reform and prohibit gays from marrying; passed one anti-women’s health bill after another; attempted to kill unions; sneaked into bills poison pills allowing giant industries to move jobs overseas, foul our air and water, and with impunity frack the ground under our feet (I could go on), we decided to cast our lot with the other party.
So, despite your voter suppression last November, we stood in line, some of us for hours, to elect the guys that “to [us] shall seem most likely to effect [our] safety and happiness.”
So, if you need to blame someone for your disarray, caused by the “forced momentum” of your unpopular ideologies, blame us, the voters — or at least the 53 percent who gave the election to Democrats (minus the districts gerrymandered to undemocratically secure perpetual Republican rule).
It’s not Obama’s fault, it’s ours. Remember us, the voters? “We, the People?” Obama’s just doing our bidding, because, well, you know, that’s his job.
Nancy Churchill was raised in the D.R.C. (Congo), raced stock cars on short dirt tracks for 25 years, and is a proud, lifelong member of “We, the People.” She lives in Oregon, Ill.
From the Jan. 30-Feb. 5, 2013, issue