The Corner

Obama Abroad

Yuval, you ask “what sort of a campaign tactic is that”? A smart one, I reckon (so long as Obama can dodge the suggestion of hubris). Americans like to be liked (who doesn’t?) and Obama is obviously reckoning on the spectacle of cheering european crowds proving to be domestic electoral magic. With an assist from the inevitable fawning network coverage he may well be right to do so. The correct GOP response is, I suspect, not to criticize Obama for traveling overseas (that just looks dog-in-the-manger), but to ask why the europeans are cheering. In part, of course, it’ll be relief at the departure of that hobgoblin of their imagination, the wicked Dubya, and in part it’ll be a natural response to Obama’s charm and oratory. But there’s something else too. They will be cheering the thought of a President who, they believe, may see the world and even America, much like they do. When Americans stop to think about what the implications of that might be, they may not be quite so impressed.

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