What the critics of Obama are not understanding is that he does get it, and what it means for him is “Stay the course.” Obama doesn’t think the election results means he has to change; it means he has to do better at what he believes in and is already doing. No backing down here at all.
The one thing all should admire here is that Obama believes in what he is doing. It may well cost him the 2012 election, but he’s a true-blue liberal and he knows exactly what that means. It means he will stay the course. Which means I don’t think there’ll be much change in the next two years.
Clip from WaPo’s Dana Milbank, a basic retelling of the press conference yesterday.
The president, facing the media in the East Room the day after what he called his “shellacking” at the polls, admitted it had been a “long night.” He confessed that it “feels bad.” He acknowledged “sadness” that so many friends and allies had lost their seats.
But what he would not acknowledge is that his policies had in any way contributed to the shellacking and sadness.
The Associated Press’s Ben Feller asked if he would concede that the midterms had been “a fundamental rejection of your agenda.”
Obama declined. “What they were expressing great frustration about is the fact that we haven’t made enough progress on the economy.”
NBC’s Savannah Guthrie noticed that “you don’t seem to be reflecting or second-guessing any of the policy decisions.”
“Over the last two years, we have made a series of very tough decisions, but decisions that were right,” Obama volleyed.
“You still resist the notion that voters rejected the policy choices you made?”
“Voters are not satisfied with the outcomes,” the president said.
No matter how many ways reporters phrased the question, the answer was the same. CNN’s ED Henry suggested there may be “a majority of Americans who think your polices are taking us in reverse,” and asked: “You just reject that idea altogether that your policies could be going in reverse?”
“Yes,” Obama said sharply.