If the Obama Administration and the supermajority of 2009 lost focus on the job market while chasing down universal health care, what exactly did they lose focus on? For starters, a passing grade on WMDs.
With the Scott Brown victory in Massachusetts, many politicos around the nation are noting that the Democrats’ efforts in Washington during their supermajority status have been a collective train wreck. The legislation that they were able to push has not been successful. The public relations hits that they have incurred during 2009 have been damaging to a reputation that, just 12 months ago, was feared by Republicans as being a legacy-creating phenomenon that would lock Republicans out of federal offices for decades.
The results? A Tea Party Movement that now rivals the power of the GOP and a wave of Republican victories that threatens the effectiveness and image of this presidency.
Through all of this, however, the president gave himself a “B+” for his first year in office.
A bipartisan committee gave the president an “F”.
The Commission on the Prevention of Weapons of Mass Destruction, Proliferation and Terrorism – chaired by former Senators Bob Graham and Jim Talent – gave the president an “F”on his efforts to stop the spread of weapons of mass destruction during the first year of his presidency. Like other presidents before Obama, the commission noted that too many inconsistencies in prevention and preparation tactics for the nation against bio-terrorism attacks and “dirty bombs” that could be used to harm Americans on the homeland.
At a time when the president’s first year reflects legislative and spending failures on domestic matters in the court of public opinion, this grade highlights the importance of the presidency on international affairs.
With the recent Christmas Day attempt in Detroit, Americans are keenly aware that the threat of terrorism is never too far from their minds. The name “Osama bin Laden” does not strike terror in the hearts of Americans as it did in 2001, but the reality that low-level, glory-seeking radicals can hatch plots on American soil (as they did in Dallas, New York, and Detroit) in 2009 and come dangerously close to success does.
Although some aspects of the administration scored favorably according to this commission, the overall “F” again speaks to a resounding reality: that the Obama Administration has miscalculated its influence on international affairs, falsely believing that the president’s personal cache would have a larger effect on leveraging new relationships with our adversaries (such as Iran) and new positions of strength with our allies. Failures to act with resources and attention towards this security threat while focusing on far-reaching universal health care reform ended up with terrorists approaching tragedy’s door step repeatedly in 2009.
Recent reports indicate that the president currently does not plan to address terrorism in his State of the Union address this week. Hopefully, those reports are wrong. Any continued focus on domestic matters as primary issues is a continuation of failing to keep proper focus on the primary concern of t