Obama PA Staffer: "[T]his campaign is about politics, not policies."
By Big Tent Democrat
Speaking for me only
[Max] Lesko, speaking for the Obama campaign - "I don't want to sound like a broken record . . . but this campaign is about politics, not policies."
I think this is a gaffe, but it is also something more. Obviously the Clinton campaign can have (and probably will have) a field day with this comment. But the issue is deeper than a political "gotcha" to me. It is a fundamental problem I have had with Barack Obama the politician for three years - his post partisan unity schtick does not argue for a specific agenda of governance. Indeed, Obama has argued against a sharp ideological contrast between Democrats and Republicans. These are mere "labels" in the Obama philosophy. There is not real difference between the parties he often argues.
More . . .
This not what Obama believes imo. He believes that he can achieve a progressive agenda by playacting this Unity Schtick. This is the essence of the Mark Schmitt Theory of Obama Change. That this unity schtick is just an act and that Obama will not triangulate progressive values when governing. As I have written too many times to count, I believe this is bad politics (it lets Republicans off the hook for their disastrous ideology) and it can lead to bad governance - 1990s style triangulation. Others in the blogs who once believed as I did on this issue have seemingly changed their mind as they have fallen silent. To me, this is about Fighting Dems and the Politics of Contrast. It used to be a staple, a core value, of the progressive blogosphere. It appears the "creative class" really did not believe in the Politics of Contrast and Fighting Dems. I still do. And it is Obama's adoption of the DLC/High Broder/Lieberman/1990s triangulation politics that has always bothered me the most about Obama. It still does.
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