*Neither conventional nor wise

NEITHER CONVENTIONAL NOR WISE…. I can only assume we’ll be hearing a lot more of this in the coming weeks.

On NBC’s Meet the Press Republican strategist Mike Murphy said President Obama’s budget indicates he’s “going left.”

And Republicans are framing that as a huge opportunity for themselves to win back support for their party.

“If he went to the middle,” said Joe Scarborough, host of MSNBC’s Morning Joe, “he would have crippled the Republican party.”

Look, I know Republican pundits feel compelled to say things like this. If only President Obama were more Republican-like, the GOP would be devastated. What a missed opportunity for the White House!

Please. Obama’s budget is ambitious and progressive, but it’s also entirely in line with what he promised the nation he’d do if elected president. And as I recall, he not only won fairly easily last November, but he received the highest vote percentage of any non-incumbent candidate of either party in 20 years, and the highest for a non-incumbent in 56 years.

He’s “going left”? Actually, he’s going with a sound and sorely-needed budget, endorsed by the electorate, and fulfilling a campaign promise. What’s wrong with that?

I still get the sense that some in the media establishment find it outrageous that President Obama is doing exactly what he said he’d do. It’s almost as if Villagers expected, counter-intuitively, to see the president run to the middle after the election. (“What do you mean he’s fulfilling campaign promises? He’s not supposed to deliver the agenda he ran on!”)

How odd.

Support Nonprofit Journalism

If you enjoyed this article, consider making a donation to help us produce more like it. The Washington Monthly was founded in 1969 to tell the stories of how government really works—and how to make it work better. Fifty years later, the need for incisive analysis and new, progressive policy ideas is clearer than ever. As a nonprofit, we rely on support from readers like you.

Yes, I’ll make a donation