Here’s Iain Martin writing in the Daily Telegraph:
Isn’t it time for him to go home yet? It is good, in theory, that the new President of the United States is taking so much time to tour Europe. He arrived in London last Tuesday, has been to Strasbourg, Prague yesterday and now he’s off to Turkey. It shows, I suppose, that he cares about the outside world and that is ‘A Good Thing’. But his long stay means that we are hearing rather a lot from him, way too much in fact. His speeches have long under-delivered, usually leaving a faintly empty sensation in this listener even though I welcomed, moderately, his victory last year as offering the possibility of a fresh start and a boost to confidence.
Yet, we are told that he is a great orator and in one way he certainly is. He does have a preternatural calm in the spotlight and a mastery of the cadences we associate with the notable speakers in US history – such as JFK and MLK. But beyond that, am I alone in finding him increasingly to be something of a bore?
His performance at the first press conference in London with Gordon Brown featured moments in which he sparkled – his riff on loving the Queen was a high-point. But most of the serious answers that I listened to were interminable, windy and not very impressive. At points there were pauses so long that it appeared he had simply lost his train of thought.
Today, we were treated to another set-piece Obama speech, and my didn’t he go on a bit?
Read the whole thing . . .