But the tonal candidate also had a conventionally liberal policy agenda. And as that agenda has run into resistance — on spending, health care and climate legislation — the president’s tone has utterly changed.
The Obama administration has gone after both Rush Limbaugh and the U.S. Chamber of Commerce — showing an inability to distinguish between the burning of heretics and the burning of bridges. It has courted insurance companies, then publicly demonized them for showing independence. Obama has tended to define all opposition, particularly on health care, as resulting from fear, cowardice and selfishness — instead of admitting genuine disagreement. At a recent fundraiser, he mocked Republicans as robots who “do what they’re told.” He has engaged in consistent, classless, self-excusing criticism of his predecessor. Other presidents have been known for a war on totalitarianism or a war on terror. Obama is known for a war on Fox News.
Do read the whole piece. Gerson points out that for all the high-minded words of candidate Obama, president Obama has been nothing but a partisan thug. Demonizing, demeaning, delegitimizing and denigrating all who oppose him in any way. The only hand he reaches out to his opponents is the back of his hand.
Which is most definitely not what he promised.