The president has now been in office six months, and last week was by far the worst seven days of his tenure.
As you know, the president could not articulate his health care vision in a one-hour press conference, and he foolishly got involved in a Massachusetts racial beef which he knew little about. That one-two punch has shaken many Americans, some of who voted for Obama on hope, knowing he was an inexperienced leader.
The poll numbers bear this out. When asked by Rasmussen if the president handled the race deal well, 26 percent said he did, 46 percent believe he did not. The latest Rasmussen Poll Monday has just 30 percent of Americans strongly approving of Mr. Obama's job performance; 40 percent strongly disapprove. A Gallup Poll asked Americans if they want health care reform passed this year: 41 percent do, 54 percent do not.
So obviously, this is not good for President Obama.
The problem is his leadership. He simply could not explain the complicated health care deal. Mr. Obama is asking Americans to invest trillions of taxpayer dollars into a new big-government program that is murky.
The race deal was also a failure to lead. Why bother getting involved in a local Cambridge, Massachusetts, beef, even if your friend is involved? A president should never do that or issue a harsh comment like "stupid" unless he has every single fact. The most powerful man on earth has to understand his power. President Obama does not seem to.
Millions of Americans voted for Barack Obama because they were fed up with the establishment who failed them. Obama ran on hope. Some folks said OK. But hope can turn to disdain pretty darn fast, and that's what we saw last week.
To be fair, the president did show strong leadership on one vital issue: nuclear weapons and Iran. Secretary of State Clinton made things very clear:
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
HILLARY CLINTON, SECRETARY OF STATE: What we want to do is to send a message to whoever is making these decisions, that if you're pursuing nuclear weapons for the purpose of intimidating, of projecting your power, we're not going to let that happen. First, we're going to do everything we can to prevent you from ever getting a nuclear weapon, but your pursuit is futile.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
Good. On the record. In stone. The USA will prevent the insane mullahs from getting the ultimate weapons of mass destruction. That is strong leadership, and now President Obama must show more of it.
And that's the "Talking Points Memo."
Pinheads & Patriots
The controversial former Miss California, Carrie Prejean, is transitioning into another career: that of a celebrity. And so she did this at the Del Mar, California, racetrack:
Now, there are two ways to look at that. First, Miss Prejean is brave and a patriot for trying to get her message out there, or second, she is a pinhead for overreaching. You make the call.
On the pinhead front, you make the call on this one as well. On Monday, President Clinton spoke at a conference to help prevent and control the obesity epidemic in America. But on Saturday night The Washington Post reports he may have been feeding into that problem. He was spotted at a burger joint ordering — ready? — a double burger, onion rings, French fries and an apple pie milkshake.
Now perhaps he was ordering for a local high school football team, but if that was just for him, Mr. Clinton may be a pinhead.