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"Obama's transformational agenda is a play in two acts."

Charles Krauthammer is offering advice we conservatives need to be taking:

The net effect of 18 months of Obamaism will be to undo much of Reaganism. Both presidencies were highly ideological, grandly ambitious and often underappreciated by their own side. In his early years, Reagan was bitterly attacked from his right. (Typical Washington Post headline: "For Reagan and the New Right, the Honeymoon Is Over" -- and that was six months into his presidency!) Obama is attacked from his left for insufficient zeal on gay rights, immigration reform, closing Guantanamo -- the list is long. The critics don't understand the big picture. Obama's transformational agenda is a play in two acts.

Act One is over. The stimulus, Obamacare, financial reform have exhausted his first-term mandate. It will bear no more heavy lifting. And the Democrats will pay the price for ideological overreaching by losing one or both houses, whether de facto or de jure. The rest of the first term will be spent consolidating these gains (writing the regulations, for example) and preparing for Act Two.

The next burst of ideological energy -- massive regulation of the energy economy, federalizing higher education and "comprehensive" immigration reform (i.e., amnesty) -- will require a second mandate, meaning reelection in 2012.

That's why there's so much tension between Obama and congressional Democrats. For Obama, 2010 matters little. If Democrats lose control of one or both houses, Obama will probably have an easier time in 2012, just as Bill Clinton used Newt Gingrich and the Republicans as the foil for his 1996 reelection campaign.

Obama is down, but it's very early in the play. Like Reagan, he came here to do things. And he's done much in his first 500 days. What he has left to do he knows must await his next 500 days -- those that come after reelection.

The real prize is 2012. Obama sees far, farther than even his own partisans. Republicans underestimate him at their peril.

The country cannot afford to understimate this President.  We must do what we can to emasculate him this November, then seal the deal by defeating him handily in 2012.

The future is now.


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Comments (12)

Charles Krauthammer is offe... (Below threshold)

Charles Krauthammer is offering advice without thinking it through first. Even IF Obama gets re-elected he CAN'T get legislation passed if he doesn't control BOTH the House and Senate.

It Just Ain't Gonna Happen

No, the second act starts the first day Congress returns from vacation after the November 2010 elections.....mark my words.

Krauthammer is wrong if he ... (Below threshold)
jim m:

Krauthammer is wrong if he thinks that obama is planning on a second term to enact his agenda. He is planning on getting it all done now. Furthermore he is not planning on two terms. Or should I say "only" two terms. He famously said in a letter o Jacques Chirac that he looked forward to working with him over the next ten years. Either he is woefully ignorant of the constitution or he really intends to be around for more than two terms. His actions imply the latter.

For the GOP to gain the Hou... (Below threshold)

For the GOP to gain the House back in 2010, is iffy. And in my opinion unlikely. For the GOP to gain the Senate back as well is basically impossible.

But we'll see.

Krauthammer's premises are ... (Below threshold)
Caesar Augustus:

Krauthammer's premises are all misplaced, but his conclusion absoutely is correct.

2012 is the real prize.

MSM is in lock step with th... (Below threshold)

MSM is in lock step with the ruling class.

The word "brink" montaged by LSM proves that media is on the same page with WH. Talking points are the same no matter what channel you go to. Hell even republicans are on that page as well considering they want to remain in the DC cliche, with no or little effort to refute Democratic policies. No republican got balls.

Krauthammer is quite correc... (Below threshold)
Jim Addison:

Krauthammer is quite correct, as usual.

Obama doesn't need to ram much more legislation through in the second half of his first term. All he needs to do is keep enough Democrats in Congress to sustain his vetoes against the repeal of health care reform and any other spending plans. The lack of a budget in Congress isn't incompetence; it is stealth: without the budget limits, committee chairmen will have no restraints on their spending plans.

Bigger spending is its own reward in Washington because of baseline budgeting. They will have set new, higher baselines before the new Congress comes in, and of course any attempts at rollbacks will be attacked as "draconian cuts" starving the poor, etc.

Obama probably HOPES he loses control of at least one House of Congress, so he can blame everything on the Republicans' obstruction and run against them in 2012.

With the disaster Obama has helped create and certainly exacerbated, our best hope is to gain just enough seats to block new initiatives with a Senate filibuster as needed, but to force the red-state Democrats to take the tough votes for Obama leading up to 2012.

jim x - "For the GOP ... (Below threshold)

jim x - "For the GOP to gain the House back in 2010, is iffy. And in my opinion unlikely. For the GOP to gain the Senate back as well is basically impossible."

Impossible? Not so but it really fails to matter.

"Control" of either house is relative isn't it? In its purest sense Reps need to have a majority of each house of congress.

In reality they don't, even it Reps only gain 20-25 house seats and 3-6 senate seats the dummycrats and obummers agenda is essentially dead.

Health care gets defunded, crap and tax never gets passed and nutjobs like the new directore of medicare gets his day before committee and the public gets to learn just how nutty he is. Etc... etc.

Reagan, even Clinton and Bu... (Below threshold)

Reagan, even Clinton and Bush, knew how to play the "bipartisan" game, but Obama has no such skills coming from a one party town like Chicago.

Marc, it's true that a few ... (Below threshold)

Marc, it's true that a few more GOP members will do their best to make things more difficult for Democrats.

But gumming up the works still doesn't qualify as control, only passive aggression really...

"But gumming up the works s... (Below threshold)

"But gumming up the works still doesn't qualify as control, only passive aggression really..." Just like the Dimos did during the Bush's term...but in you deluded world it is okay when Dimos do it.

jim x - "But gumming ... (Below threshold)

jim x - "But gumming up the works still doesn't qualify as control, only passive aggression really..."

"Gun up the works?"

Spoken like a true-blue obamamite, i.e. like his BS today about how its the Reps fault the extension of unemployment is due to them.

Funny how he didn't mention how 30 plus Dems in the house are VERY hesitant about passing it and not paying for it. He also ignored the Rep written Bill in the house to pay for the 6 month extension by using "stimulus" funds, cash that's already borrowed and not add another 30 billion to the national debt.

In short rather than being what promised, "the first post-racial" president and one who "would work across party lines" he in real life is..

The Demogoge-in-Chief.

Marc, it's funny how unempl... (Below threshold)

Marc, it's funny how unemployment benefits can't add to the deficit because it's too big already. But tax cuts for the wealthy? Sure, no problem!






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