The Corner

Ezra Klein: Obama’s a Moderate Republican

The WaPo writer says, “President Obama, if you look closely at his positions, is a moderate Republican of the early 1990s.” (You might also have to squint.) “And the Republican Party he’s facing has abandoned many of its best ideas in its effort to oppose him.” For example, Obama wants to raise taxes–just as the first President Bush ended up doing.

This is fun! Let’s see if we can recast George W. Bush as a mainstream Democrat. He was for No Child Left Behind–like Ted Kennedy. He favored the war in Iraq–like John Kerry. He cut taxes–with Max Baucus’s support. He tried to reform Social Security with personal accounts–an idea pushed by Daniel Patrick Moynihan.

What a pity the Democrats abandoned these ideas in their rush to extremism.

Update: Klein responds, although he does not really defend the criticism of today’s Republicans and the non-criticism of yesterday’s Democrats. He also alleges errors on my part that he does not specify.

Ramesh Ponnuru — Ramesh Ponnuru is a senior editor for National Review, a columnist for Bloomberg View, a visiting fellow at the American Enterprise Institute, and a senior fellow at the National Review Institute.

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