As the GOP plods through its revival of last century’s Absurdist masterpiece, “Waiting for Godot,” (Christie, Palin, whoever), there are reminders that Americans have an actual president trying to govern in the real world.
In his Weekly Address, Barack Obama says, “It’s been almost three weeks since I sent the American Jobs Act to Congress--three weeks since I sent them a bill that would put people back to work and put money in people’s pockets...And now I want it back. It is time for Congress to get its act together and pass this jobs bill so I can sign it into law...
“(O)ne Republican was quoted as saying that their party shouldn’t pass this jobs bill because it would give me a win. Well this isn’t about giving me a win, and it’s not about them...If anyone watching feels the same way, don’t be shy about letting your Congressman know.”
Obama 2.0, the new aggressive version, is still a work in progress, but the last traces of pointless conciliation are fading away.
Even in facing supporters, the President has been standing his ground. Addressing a gay-rights group, he called out Republican wannabes for remaining silent while a debate crowd booed a soldier asking about “don’t ask, don’t tell.”
"You want to be commander in chief,” he reminded Romney et al, “you can start by standing up for the men and women who wear the uniform of the United States, even when it’s not politically convenient."
At the same time, he did not alter his position on gay marriage. “Every single American,” he affirmed, “deserves to be treated equally before the law,” and went no further.
The emergence of a more combative Obama would coincide with the signs that Congressional incumbents are beginning to feel the heat over their wall-to-wall Tea Party resistance.
It’s past time for the President to keep turning up the heat. He may want to remember how “Waiting for Godot” ends:
The dispirited characters hoping to be saved finally try to hang themselves with one’s belt that breaks and leaves his pants falling down. It would be a shame to lose to that kind of absurd opposition.
Update: The President’s reelection campaign officially declares open season on the GOP pretenders:
“The campaign to win the Republican nomination has become a campaign to win the hearts and minds of the Tea Party. They would return to policies that have been tried before and done nothing to improve economic security for the middle class, rewarding special interests who can afford to pay for lobbyists instead of looking out for working families.”
A start, but they can use stronger language than that.