Positions Don’t Define Politicians, Actions Do.

by Jim Geraghty

From the Thursday edition of the Morning Jolt:

Positions Don’t Define Politicians, Actions Do.

Way back in 2007, then-Senator Barack Obama was making statements like these, suggesting he wanted to seriously reform affirmative action, shifting it from a program that evaluated people based on race and instead evaluated people based upon income:

STEPHANOPOULOS: Why should your
 daughters, when they go to college, get affirmative action?”

OBAMA: Well, first of all, I think that my daughters should
 probably be treated by any admissions officer as folks who are pretty
 advantaged, and I think that there’s nothing wrong with us taking that
 into account as we consider admissions policies at universities. I think that we should take into account white kids who have been disadvantaged and have grown up in poverty and shown themselves to 
have what it takes to succeed.

The nuanced position on affirmative action was a pretty important point in establishing Obama as a Democrat who wasn’t a down-the-line liberal. The media largely concurred with his self-definition as a pragmatist or a centrist; after all, he had defied the liberal line with his criticism of the increasing national debt as “unpatriotic”, his declaration to Rick Warren that he believed marriage was “the union between a man and a woman,” and his insistence that “we’re going to have to take on entitlements, and we’re going to have to do it quickly.”

You see where I’m going with this.

Here we are, seven years later. Obama has been president for five of them. He’s run up record amounts of debt, he’s announced his support for gay marriage, and there’s no sign that any entitlement reform will be enacted during his presidency. And affirmative action remains the same as it was before, as the Obama administration argues existing programs should remain in place as they are.

All the intriguing anecdotes and thoughtful interview responses in the world don’t amount to a hill of beans compared to actual policy and decisions.

S.M. over at The Wilderness:

Barack Obama thinks his job is to lead the mob, not the country. When the mob dishes out justice, as they did with Brendan Eich, there’s nothing more for him to say.


Obama only speaks out when he sees something he disagrees with. That’s what progressive activists do. He doesn’t take to stage or podium and remind people of the protected First Amendment right of all Americans and that Eich’s contribution to political causes is important to the free political process of participation. As the Democrat Party binges on a Koch Brothers fueled narrative about millionaires owning elections with their wallets, they remained deftly silent about one private citizen, donating a mere one thousand dollars to the cause of his choice, a choice protected by the Constitution and upheld, repeatedly by the Supreme Court.

He adds, “Obama had absolutely nothing to do with Lois Lerner IRS targeting, which is why she talked about taking a job with his organization.”

We can scoff at Democrats, the media and a few Republicans for so easily and credulously buying into the notion that a machine politician mentored by William Ayers and Jeremiah Wright would govern as some David-Gergen-esque centrist. (And we should! And we do!) But we on the Right probably ought to remember this in a year or two, when a half-dozen or a dozen Republicans are going to tell us they’re the “real conservative” in the bunch. A lot of them will attempt to claim this mantle by running down the checklist of policy positions and declaring they agree with us on all or almost all of them.

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