“What”, I asked shortly after the conclusion of the Democratic National Convention in Denver in 2008, “Justifies the Left’s Enthusiasm for Obama?“:
- What has he accomplished besides deliver some really powerful speeches? Has he, in his twelve years in public office, enacted any major reforms, been the driving force behind any bipartisan legislation?
- What has he done to effect this new kind of politics he describes so readily?
They loved their nominee without any evidence to support their case that he was a new kind of politician able to transform the political landscape. They could point to no speeches, identify no policies where he had both shown a keen understanding of issues and demonstrated the ability to turn an good idea into a workable legislative proposal — and help shepherd that proposal through the legislature.
In the course of the 2008 presidential campaign, conservative bloggers, looking at the Democrat’s record, concluded that he was all hat, no cattle. So, in the wake of last week’s debate, when many liberal pundits were beginning to realize that they may have “overestimated” Mr. Obama’s qualities, Ace, with the words below, seems to speak for conservatives:
Let me suggest something that many conservatives realized after the debate: Obama did not do that badly. For Obama. He was the same listless, droning, exhausted-of-ideas scold we have seen for at least two years now (and maybe three).
He was Obama. This is what he is. He is not quick-witted. He is not, as I think I saw Mickey Kaus note, a wonk. He has never been a wonk, a detailed-policy guy.
He is a guy who speaks vacuously of hopes and dreams and change and fairness.
He always has been.
The problem, for the liberals, is not Obama. This is what you bought. This is your guy. It wasn’t his A game, but it was something close to his B+ game.