‘THE TASTE THAT LINGERS’…. NBC’s “Meet the Press,” not surprisingly, touched on the 2016 Olympics decision, and the politics surrounding this week’s events. Rachel Maddow’s analysis struck me as entirely right.
“The unseemly cheering on the right for America losing its Olympic bid I think is going to be the taste that lingers a long time after this failure,” Rachel said. “Certainly the president tried to get something and he didn’t get it, and people who hate the president feel like that’s a cause for celebration. But to see, for example, the Weekly Standard post ‘Chicago loses, Chicago loses, cheers erupt at Weekly Standard headquarters’ I think says a lot more about the Weekly Standard, it says a lot more about the right right now than it does about this loss.”
Noting the larger context, Rachel added, “In 2012, London got the Olympics after Blair tried for them; in 2014, Russian got them — Russia got them after Putin tried for them; and in 2016 all four finalists had their head of government or head of state to make the argument. Obama did nothing unreasonable. And it would’ve been a shock if Chicago won. For them to be cheering America’s loss here on the right I think is sort of disgusting.”
David Brooks largely agreed, at least to the extent that the president’s efforts were entirely reasonable. “He took a risk for his country,” Brooks said. “He put the country ahead of his own personal prestige. He lost one. I actually don’t mind it. I think, I think he was all right on this.”
E.J. Dionne added, “John McCain’s slogan was ‘country first,’ and in this case it was ‘Obama hatred first’ on the right, not the country.”
It’s probably too much to ask for some kind of significant backlash, but I suspect if a pollster were to ask Americans which bothered them more, the president trying to bring the Olympics to the U.S. or the president’s detractors cheering the Olympics not coming to the U.S., conservatives wouldn’t fare especially well.