By CHARLES HURT - INSIDE WASHINGTON
Last updated: 3:37 am
March 27, 2009
Posted: 2:40 am
March 27, 2009
FOR a guy who talks so much about wanting a new era of responsibility, President Obama spends an awful lot of time blaming Republicans for all the wild and reckless spending he crammed into his own budget.
After running a campaign against the $1 trillion deficit he "inherited" from President Bush and the Republicans, Obama quickly matched it. During his first 50 days in office, he and his Democratic-controlled Congress spent $1 billion an hour.
Under Obama's proposed budget, the overall national debt doubles in five years and triples in 10.
Not exactly "moving from an era of borrow and spend to one where we save and invest," as he promised.
How does Mr. Responsibility explain the disconnect between this reality and his absurd claims? By insisting that Republicans were worse.
"To a bunch of the critics out there, I've already said, show me your budget!" he told a gathering of wealthy Democratic donors this week. "I'm happy to have that debate."
Or, another time: "I suspect that some of those Republican critics have a short memory, because as I recall I'm inheriting a $1.3 trillion deficit, annual deficit, from them."
In other words, Obama cannot defend his decision to double down on deficit spending. So, he simply trashes Republicans.
As if voters right now are looking for somebody just not as bad as the GOP. As if his campaign slogan wasn't "Change You Can Believe In," but rather "Vote for Me. I'm Not as Bad as Republicans."
Anyway, Republicans tried this out-of-control spending derby -- and just look where that got them. In a few short years, they lost control of every single lever of power exactly because of this kind of behavior.
Yet in even less time, Obama has put away his promises of Hope and Change and tossed aside the idealism of his campaign about remaking politics in Washington.
Surveying the political landscape here today, Obama is thinking of that adage cherished by cutthroats everywhere.
If you and a buddy are walking through the woods and encounter a hungry, angry bear, you don't have to outrun the bear. You simply have to outrun your buddy.