On Sunday, President Barack Obama will execute what might be called a Modified Full Ginsburg — appearing on five Sunday morning talk shows to make a pitch for health reform.
It’s a move few politicians have attempted. Even fewer have been able to stick the landing.
The Full Ginsburg, of course, was named for Monica Lewinsky’s lawyer William Ginsburg, who first did the five-fecta of Sunday talk on Feb. 1, 1999. Obama’s move is slightly different – swapping in the Spanish-language network Univision for Fox News Channel.
“More isn’t always more when it comes to a president’s words,” said former Clinton White House Press Secretary Dee Dee Myers. “This is something they need to start to be concerned about.”
Obama, Myers said, believes that if he has enough time, he can convince anyone of his position on health care reform. “But there’s a limit to that,” she said. “You cannot convince everyone, even when your argument is indisputably airtight and true. You can’t convince people who believe in death panels that there aren’t any death panels.” (emphasis mine)
It requires a certain level of hubris for an administration to so blithely ignore the over exposure that plagues this President and his policies. Since the Wednesday night Obamacare pep rally, support for the President’s healthcare reform initiatives has dropped, consistently. The flash and the sizzle that carried Candidate Obama across the finish line no longer works with an electorate devastated by job losses that continue exceed half a million a month. The political landscape that introduced Candidate Obama now resembles a moonscape. But the White House has failed to take notice and continues to prescribe a regimine of rhetoric for an electorate that clearly covets a job more than a presidential speech.
You would think that the recent buffoonery of Jimmy Carter, in which the Littlest Ex President openly played a race card that the White House dearly wanted to hold for a bigger pot, would have served as a caution to the President against overexposure. But Barrack Obama, whose Presidency was conceived and midwifed by an entertainment industry that doesn’t know the meaning of moderation, continues to do the only thing he’s trained to do: give a speech and lecture his audience. There is, to borrow a perjorative from the critics of George H. W. Bush’s era, a real lack of gravitas in this administration. And balls. But Bush 41’s critics are strangely silent now, so deep are they under the spell of Obama.
Voters, however, are paying attention. Conservatives and independents are offended by the racial sermonizing. Moderates see ObamaCare for what it is, an attempt to change a healthcare delivery system that works for them. Cold Warriors see the unilateral missile defense surrender for what it is. Fiscal conservatives of both parties (many of whom are unemployed) see the stimulus spending plan and Cap and Trade for what it is…a political payoff, not a job creator. All of these constituencies know that Fox is one of the very few networks where the President might encounter a difficult question.
Avoidance, evasion and denial are the new hallmarks of an administration only eight months into office.