Mean Obama? Nice Obama? Neither Will Beat a Stubborn GOP

Writing at the Huffington Post, Keith Boykin takes on what he says are "delusional and contradictory" notions about how the president could be more effective. 

Posted:
 
presidentobamagop4252013575vg
President Barack Obama (Jewel Samad/Getty Images)

Writing at the Huffington Post, Keith Boykin takes on what he says are "delusional and contradictory" notions about how the president could be more effective.

Sunday's New York Times op-ed page featured an astonishing piece from columnist Maureen Dowd arguing that gun background checks would have passed in the U.S. Senate if President Obama had been more aggressive. The column was widely criticized, but then Tuesday's Times promoted the same facile analysis in a news article about a president who "hesitates to twist arms."

Both pieces miss the point. Even if every Democrat in the U.S. Senate had voted for the Manchin-Toomey amendment on background checks, it still would have failed to reach the 60-vote supermajority required for passage in the highly undemocratic chamber. And even if it had passed in the Senate, it had much less chance of surviving through the obstructionist GOP-controlled House of Representatives.

What's troubling about this latest anti-Obama meme is that it promotes delusional and contradictory notions that President Obama would be more effective if he would (a) be meaner to his opponents, or (b) have dinner and drinks with them.

Remember, this is a president who's arguably accomplished more progressive goals than any other Democratic president of the past century except FDR and LBJ. And while some pundits publicly pine for the days of master politicians like Bill Clinton, it's important not to succumb to historical revisionism about the past.

Read Keith Boykin's entire piece  at the Huffington Post.

The Root aims to foster and advance conversations about issues to the black Diaspora by presenting a variety of opinions from all perspectives, whether or not those opinions are shared by our editorial staff.

Like The Root on Facebook. Follow us on Twitter.