Pundits and, for that matter, the Obama campaign were right to ding Mitt Romney’s foreign policy address Tuesday for banging the table instead of putting anything substantive on it. But what could Romney do? Obama has given him almost nothing to work with.
As I wrote not long ago, the violence now being deployed by Mubarak's thugs against demonstrators changes the calculus. And, based on Robert Gibbs' briefing today, the administration has not responded. Gibbs has alluded multiple times to private conversations the administration has had with Mubarak, but its public stance remains measured. Gibbs would not even acknowledge multiple reports that violence is being undertaken by pro-regime forces. It's unacceptable and it has to change very quickly.
The contours and consequences of the uprising in Egypt—which, after decades in which Hosni Mubarak destroyed the civil society of his country and stifled the most elementary aspirations of his people, was perfectly inevitable—are still unclear. About the justice of the protestors’ anger there can be no doubt. But the politics of the revolt are murky.
[Guest post by Noam Scheiber:] Anyone interested in this question has no doubt read about Altman's multiple White House visits to discuss relieving Larry Summers as head of the National Economic Council (NEC). And yet, here we stand, just days from Summers's planned departure--NEC staffers have been busy writing exit memos, as I understand it--without an announcement about his replacement.
White House spokesman Robert Gibbs found himself the object of mockery on Twitter Wednesday, when some political reporters started spoofing his efforts to promote the Obama tax cut deal. I was happy to see the reporters making fun of Gibbs. But I was even more happy to see Gibbs promoting the tax deal in the way he was, because it suggested the White House might be learning how to convey its message more effectively. Here's what happened, as an article in Politico subsequently detailed.
The more Hillary Clinton assures us that the deluge of WikiLeaks dossiers and minutes of conversations are no problem, the more we know she is lying. She does that well, of course, and also with a certain confidence. It's home territory to her. Robert Gibbs has, more or less, confirmed this, although with a hokey statement that confirms the job of the president's spokesperson to be the work for someone confident in dishing out deceit. See Devonia Smith's comments at Examiner.com. But here's what Gibbs himself said: I don't think it will dominate the issues.
Among the many distinctions David Axelrod has achieved in his career, there is one that requires special elaboration: He is, it turns out, one of the few customers to have ever run a tab at Manny’s, the Chicago cafeteria and deli. This is not because the odd knish ($4.25) or side of potato chips ($0.75) threatened to leave him cash-poor. It is, rather, because Axelrod has long styled himself someone who accumulates wisdom at places regular people frequent, not the lacquered haunts of downtown Washington. What the Oval Room is to Beltway consultant-dom, Manny’s is to Axelrod.
Is the Obama Administration planning another major initiative to boost the economy? That depends on who is talking.
Over the last week, there has been a lot of consternation in the progressive community over White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs’s interview with The Hill in which he aired a series of grievances with the left.