The 2008 peacemaker politician has emerged as a skilled guerrilla warrior. If Bill Clinton's tactical legacy was disarming his opponents by stealing their ideas -- welfare reform, 'personal responsibility,' cutting spending -- Obama's may be his skill at dividing to conquer his Republican foes."
"Conservatives were once the reigning champs of honing in and exploiting an opponent's weakness. Under this President, Lee Atwater's Sun-Tzu quoting descendants have met their match." ...Fortune, via Political Wire
Never thought I'd see the day when Obama would share a mention with Lee Atwater. Some call it shape-shifting. I call Obama a welcome example of a deft politician, an LBJ rather than a JFK. More:
Republicans are gamely trying to spin the fiscal cliff deal as a victory -- 99% of the Bush tax cuts enshrined as permanent! But here's what Obama got: A pass on entitlement reform (which now recedes to the "unlikely" category even as debt-to-GDP ratios threaten the economy); the public triumph of his election-year narrative that taxes are about "fairness" not economic growth; and a chance to divide Republican ranks between those fearful of being blamed for economic chaos and those fearful of losing conservative supporters. ...
... As GOP leaders look toward the next series of fiscal crises and entertain explosive talk of government shutdowns or defaults, they shouldn't forget the past year's lesson: Beware when this White House is handing you a suicide pistol. ...Fortune
There are some good reasons for having a gun, after all. In this case it's less about defending "me" and more about defending "us." But that's why we're Democrats, not Republicans.