Former President George W. Bush has long been the all-purpose bogeyman of Democratic Party and their various echo chamber in the mainstream media and left-of-center blogosphere. They blamed all manner of woes on him during his tenure his office, ran against him in 2008 (even though he wasn’t on the ballot) and his successor continues to blame his difficulties on him.
Now, Newsweek columnist Eleanor Clift tells us, he just “isn’t blaming George W. Bush enough.”
Obama inherited a big mess, and people are frustrated that he hasn’t fixed the economy. Counseling patience together with a show of resolve and determination helped President Reagan weather the storm in his first midterm election under conditions remarkably similar to today. Unemployment stood at 10.8 percent when voters went to the polls in November 1982, and Reagan’s numbers were 49-47, almost identical to Obama’s (50-47).
One key difference: Obama hasn’t done as good a job as Reagan of blaming his predecessor. Jimmy Carter for years served as the GOP’s version of Herbert Hoover while Obama let George W. Bush slip away into the ether, a former president so invisible that he might as well be in a witness-protection program. Bush’s upcoming book, Decision Points, won’t be released until a week after the November election, reinforcing the GOP’s decision to keep the unpopular president out of the mix in the midterms.
Seems Ms. Clift is using the poll most favorable to the president and she’s forgetting that we’re not yet in November. Polls could still go down. Also recall this, Ronald Reagan’s economic plan, while enacted in 1981, didn’t kick in until 1983. The Gipper never promised us unemployment would remain below 8% within six months of the passage of his tax cuts.
And then there’s this and let me quote Ms. Clift again to emphasize something she said: “Obama hasn’t done as good a job as Reagan of blaming his predecessor.” Emphasis added. Please, Eleanor, please show us where after January 20, 1981, Ronald Reagan blamed Jimmy Carter for the mess he inherited. Indeed, see if you can find him blaming his the then-defeated incumbent between November 4, 1980 and his inauguration ten weeks later.
Folks like Ms. Clift really can’t let go of their obsession with George W. Bush nor their misunderstandings of Ronald Wilson Reagan. So fixated have they become on the immediate past president that they think all will be made well (in their psyches at least) if they keep reminding themselves people how horrible, no good and very bad he really is was.