...is the GOP Congress as the President does a deft job of trying to reboot his final year with small unilateral steps to get around the pachyderm squatting on the path to economic recovery, leading up to a plea for bipartisan cooperation on larger issues that hits a blank wall in the faces of McConnell, Boehner, Cantor and their Tea Party obstructionists.
Without explicit blame, Barack Obama (the man knows how to work a room) acts out a psychodrama of the leader who killed bin Laden and saved Detroit but could not overcome the intransigence of Republicans who say no to everything.
Only at the end, does he allude to the elephant in the room: “The greatest blow to our confidence in our economy last year didn’t come from events beyond our control. It came from a debate in Washington over whether the United States would pay its bills or not. Who benefited from that fiasco? I’ve talked tonight about the deficit of trust between Main Street and Wall Street. But the divide between this city and the rest of the country is at least as bad--and it seems to get worse every year.”
For a rebuttal, Republicans send out smooth Indiana Gov. Mitch Daniels, who asserts, “It’s not fair and it’s not true for the president to attack Republicans in Congress as obstacles on these questions. They and they alone have passed bills to reduce borrowing, reform entitlements and encourage new job creation, only to be shot down nearly time and again by the president and his Democrat Senate allies.
“No feature of the Obama presidency has been sadder than its constant efforts to divide us, to curry favor with some Americans by castigating others.”
Say what? Daniels, who would have been crushed in 18 Obama-bashing debates if he had sought the presidential nomination, offers no evidence for these bizarre claims but Mitt Romney, taking time out from explaining away his 14 percent tax rate on last year’s income of $21.7 million, reacts to the State of the Union with puzzlement.
“What he says and what he does are so dramatically different. Where was he during his first two years? Why didn’t he get these things done during his first two years?”
In watching the President’s speech, Romney was looking right at the reason, his own party’s elephant in the room. If he can get past Newt Gingrich in the primaries, the President no doubt will explain it all to him on the campaign trail later in the year.