Wednesday, November 5, 2008
President Barack Obama
It's time to rally behind the new president. It is truly a(n) historic moment when we can be proud to have crossed the race barrier (now if we can just get past religious prejudice...). Regardless of differences, the one thing both candidates claimed was important - becoming united as a country and getting out of the partisan gridlock that has crippled our nation - is critical. Hopefully we will see this happening now.
I was encouraged when Obama quoted Lincoln in his acceptance speech. He couldn't have a better example of what is needed now. If he holds Lincoln as his hero we will do well. Lincoln's greatness is exemplified in Team of Rivals, The Political Genius of Abraham Lincoln by Doris Kearns Goodwin. He turned his enemies into allies. He recognized what his opponents had to offer; what they were good at and swallowed his pride, putting his former haters in key cabinet and military positions. His previous critics became his greatest fans and friends when he earned their loyalty. He was able to overcome bipartisanship when the country needed to be united. This is what we need now. Obama could and should do this.
I hope the new President is up to the huge job ahead. He certainly has the charisma and the drive. If he surrounds himself with the right, experienced advisors, he could be just what we need. Where he is weak, if he finds experts, regardless of political affiliation he can do it. Oh - and if he quits wimping out about universal health care of course..... It can be done but it can't be halfway. Again, find people, even those from outside our country where their system is working to advise him, and this could also be accomplished.
What we don't need are people like former Mayor Rocky Anderson, who did not respect the person even for the office he holds and who rallied against the President of the United States, even while representing all people of his city. It was downright embarassing!
Good luck to our new leaders and let's pray for their safety and success in tackling a really tough job. I heard someone say "the President doesn't actually have power - he's just the scapegoat." Maybe some truth here - Bush alone didn't mess up America and members of Congress must all get on this bandwagon of knocking down bipartisan in-fighting for the good of the country.
I also was moved by McCain's sincere concession speech. This is behavior we should see more of in the political realm. He is truly a gentleman!