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February 11, 2016

Obama Administration Heading for a Tough Few Weeks

Maybe it’s because two-term presidents suffer from hubris, or merely that after an administration has been in office for years, it inevitably makes mistakes (and too often tries to cover them up). But recent news reports ought to make Democrats at least a little nervous about the next few months and even 2014.

First, the administration started digging a hole for itself on Benghazi, with a high-level Foreign Service officer raising questions about the Obama administration’s handling of the September incident and subsequent behavior.

And then, the IRS “apologized” for targeting tea party groups for extra scrutiny, indicating a pattern of behavior that, whether true or not, suggests politically-motivated behavior.

Now, the Washington Post is up with an article asking whether the president will suffer a “second-term curse.”

Democrats surely will respond that the Obama administration had nothing to do with the IRS’s behavior and that it is Republicans who are trying to politicize both controversies to score points against President Barack Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton.

Regardless of whom you believe, the controversies take attention away from the GOP’s problems and could put the president, and his party, on the defensive for the next few weeks or months. (Recent coverage about the implementation of the administration’s health care plan also suggests a rocky road over the next year.)

The last five presidents elected to a second consecutive term – Dwight Eisenhower, Richard Nixon, Ronald Reagan, Bill Clinton and George W. Bush – all suffered through problems, ranging from economic and foreign policy to personal.

Obama may or may not join that group (not all of whom suffered a stinging defeat in his second-term election), but Democratic strategists have to hope that media’s focus returns to Republicans and their opposition to the president’s agenda.

  • newmerical

    Gosh Stu, thanks for another article about nothing. Worthless read.

    • Schlomo

      Over-the-top indifference, good strategy. Didn’t work for Hamlet’s mom, though.

      • Yabba_Dabba

        If only this would end as well…

        • Schlomo

          HA! Go easy, though. This kind of talk got me kicked off of RealClear.

          On second thought, never mind. These pedants have no clue how Hamlet ended. They won’t until Peter Jackson produces a version, anyway.

  • CrazyHungarian

    I wonder if the media is finally getting tired of covering for this administration?, Never mind, it was just a silly thought.

    • S. Strengari

      Maybe they should considering they are seen as disposable pawns in advancing their Liberal/Progressive agenda (a la AP scandal that just came out). In spite of their bias, at one time people saw the Fourth Estate the guardians of our democracy. Now they are the lapdogs of tyrants!!!

  • MDABE80

    Brushing this off because other Presidents have had some trouble is silly. In no way is Obama in the company of those other presidents. Soft selling what his administration has done is just out of touch and smacks of a writer besiged by a deadline instead of an indepth look. I mean seriously a potted plant could do just as well. No offense Stu.

  • JadedFan

    The IRS thing is the most troubling. Lying about Libya is about par for the course. But the IRS thing is really Nixon territory. That needs to be investigated, and however high it goes people need to be fired and jailed.

    • Yabba_Dabba

      It’s not just the IRS… Obama has weaponized the US government against his “enemies”: EPA (to destroy coal/oil), the Dept. of Justice (letting Black Panther terrorists off the hook for poll thuggery, smuggling illegal guns to drug thugs in Mexico, etc.), Dept. of Education to ram extremist Leftist propaganda down the throats of American children, CIA and Dept. of State to overthrow Middle East allies (such as they were) to replace them with far more lethal Muslim fascists like the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, Libya, Syria, etc, the list is log, and getting longer.

      This IRS outrage is just the most recent and egregious example to come to light. Obama far outstrips anything Nixon did. People have died (Fast and Furious, Benghazi, many Islamic terrorist attacks on US soil) because Obama flat-out refuses to identify the Islamic Jihad enemy, while referring to whites as “cowards”, conservatives and tea partiers as “enemies”, targeting Christians as the most likely to commit acts of terrorism on US soil, etc.

      Obama is the most toxic political figure to ever occupy the WH…

    • Robert Schuman

      I think you need to adjust your scale. Just how many people did Nixon cause to be arrested under false pretenses? And, so publicly? Until this current administration I thought that NOTHING could rehabilitate Nixon! Incidentally, lying to cover-up deliberately forsaking Americans to be murdered is definitely not par-for-the-course! Shades of Fast and Furious!

  • surfcat50

    Time to bust out a new deck of race cards.

  • PatW

    Comparing the current person in the White House to other Presidents is a major insult to past Presidents (even Carter). o is nothing but a joke and a fraud. Nothing presidential about him.

    • richard40

      The only one that comes close to Obama in ethics is Nixon, but Nixon also had some good qualities, like basic competance. Perhaps if you combine the ethics of nixon with the incompetance of carter, you come close.

  • CLEmom

    A tough few weeks for the administration?
    It’s been a tough 4.5 years for the American people, with no end in sight.
    Hopefully this nightmare will be over well before 2016.

  • Schlomo

    Count one proud former Libertarian (and circumstantial agnostic and —- smoker) now registered in the GOP camp. I’ll take internal squabbling over the Leftist/Democrat goose-stepping precision any day of the week, as political parties go.

    • richard40

      I also am former libertarian, now tea partier. Like you one of the main reasons is at least repubs will occasionally agree to criticise and clean up their own corruption, as they did when much of the party abandoned bush in 2006-2008, and now agree that he made serious errors.. I have yet to see the dems do the same with Obama. They seem to mindlessly spring to his defense no matter what he does. I have also seen dems actually saying that it is OK for the IRS to target political enemies, as long as they are their political enemies, like the recent statement from the NAACP.

  • ElmerEvans

    This passes for insight & intellect?

    • Schlomo

      Give Stu a pass. 50.8 percent of the US electorate needs to be bludgeoned with the glaringly obvious.

      • georgedixon1

        That 50.8% largely do not pay taxes to the IRS to help with the costs of supporting the growing Democrat underclass.

  • georgedixon1

    The Miner’s Canary for Democrat Rule and Democrat Policy: Detroit

    The Detroit News:
    “May 12, 2013

    Detroit insolvent, Detroits appointed Emergency Manager and DC Bankruptcy Lawyer Kevyn Orr says

    City’s cash flow running in the red, ability to borrow exhausted”

  • mike_s

    Wow – did Rothenberg get paid for this piece? I wasted 45 seconds reading this, looking for some meat. Instead all I got was some whining apologia for Obama. Thanks for nothing, Stu.

  • CTLO34

    Notice that this sympathetic article makes Obama out to have just gotten a little off track. Not that he is a maniacal demogogue, suffering from Marxist frustration that he cannot be dictator. He’s reached his high water mark. He’s like an object-de-toilet, about to be flushed for the good of our nation.

  • @notrizzo

    “the Obama administration had nothing to do with the IRS’s behavior”. This is silly, the head of the IRS is a political appontee, so resonsibility for these actions, either by ordering it, encouraging it or failing to properly oversee in order to prevent it, all fall upon the leadership of the agency and thus also on the man who appointed that leadership.

    • richard40

      True, the most that can be said so far is we dont know yet whether obama or any of his top aides had involvement with the IRS scandal. The minimum obama can hope for here is gross negligence and incompetance, especially since tea party groups had been complaining about this IRS politization for years, but nothing was done until now. At worst we are talking about an impeachable offense equivalent to Nixon.

  • Steve

    Democrats are only in favor of good government and morality when there is a Republican President. As soon as a Democrat is elected they use Republican actions to claim precedent. The same precedent they decried so loudly.

    In other words, they are hypocrites and morally bankrupt. But what they trade in temporary advantage will come back to bite them when a Republican is elected.

    They seek only power and have no shame, so I suppose it won’t bother them at all.

    • Robert Schuman

      “But what they trade in temporary advantage will come back to bite them . . .” The first part seems correct. However, I see nothing in history to support the second part, the damage done by liberals from Wilson on is still with us. Murphy’s Law: 54, It is far easier to break things than to fix them.

  • Constitution First

    How many crimes against the American people, the Constitution and the Republic have to go unpunished before we demand justice?

    Now can we impeach!

    • A Smith

      Impeachment will make him look like a victim. Just let him keep failing, which will continue to taint their brand in the 2014 and 2016 elections.

  • A Smith

    It doesn’t help that our president is a complete jerk.

  • edsheppa

    “indicating a pattern of behavior that, whether true or not”

    Whether the IRS thing is a pattern or not, there is a definite pattern of behavior from this Administration – it promised transparency but has practiced opacity.
    And there’s another pattern about – the so-called mainstream media is incensed by spin and cover-up by Republican Administrations just yawn or, worse, help when Democrats do it.

  • Sam

    Don’t worry, the Obamedia will spend the final 2-3 months prior to the midterm in their usual fawning lapdog mode.

  • NoDonkey

    This was on page 10 in my local paper, it would have been “Pearl Harbor Bombed” sized font on Page 1 if we had a GOP President.
    If you want accountability in government, elect a Republican. If you want corruption, incompetence and media playing defense attorney for the administration, elect a Democrat.

  • Julie Cosgrove

    AP records seized illegally under Obama’s Justice Department. That’s not a good way to keep your lapdogs on your side.
    The tide is turning. Obama will be crucified as he and his corrupt administration deserves. BURN HIM ALIVE!

  • Harsh Times

    BHO brought it on himself due to the arrogance and ineptness of his administration. Feel sorry for America, not BHO.

  • richard40

    Stu, this is more than obama running into some temporary trouble in his march to subdue the repubs, this is nixon territory.

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