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Obama cracks whip on weak-willed Dems

Everyone, it seems, is focused today on Vice President Biden's "stop whining" lecture directed at the Democratic base. It's a talking-to that gets an amen from me. As I said Sunday in a speech that touched on the frustration that there hasn't been enough movement on some gay rights issues, imagine what things would be like had Sen. John McCain and Sarah Palin won the White House.

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But my "amens" turned to "preach!" after reading the forceful comments President Obama made after he ended an interview with Rolling Stone (on newsstands and the Web now) but returned to make one final point.

One closing remark that I want to make: It is inexcusable for any Democrat or progressive right now to stand on the sidelines in this midterm election. There may be complaints about us not having gotten certain things done, not fast enough, making certain legislative compromises. But right now, we've got a choice between a Republican Party that has moved to the right of George Bush and is looking to lock in the same policies that got us into these disasters in the first place, versus an administration that, with some admitted warts, has been the most successful administration in a generation in moving progressive agendas forward.

The idea that we've got a lack of enthusiasm in the Democratic base, that people are sitting on their hands complaining, is just irresponsible.....

We have to get folks off the sidelines. People need to shake off this lethargy, people need to buck up. Bringing about change is hard -- that's what I said during the campaign. It has been hard, and we've got some lumps to show for it. But if people now want to take their ball and go home, that tells me folks weren't serious in the first place.

If you're serious, now's exactly the time that people have to step up.

Got that, whiners?

By Jonathan Capehart  | September 28, 2010; 2:43 PM ET
Categories:  Capehart  | Tags:  Jonathan Capehart  
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Comments

I'm sorry Mr. Capeheart, but I can't disagree with you more. I believe this president is in trouble - and it is only in the worst possible taste that he and his staff attack the people who elected him. I don't know anyone who voted for President Obama in 2008 who now wishes he had voted for Sen. McCain instead; however, almost all of them feel they've been insulted, berated and marginalized by the Obama administration, starting with the inaugural invocation and continuing up to the Rolling Stone interview. Enough. If the only choice I have is between a psychotic republican and a sociopathic democrat - I'm just going to stay home.

Posted by: seabelly1 | September 28, 2010 4:02 PM | Report abuse

I'm sorry Mr. Capeheart, but I can't disagree with you more. I believe this president is in trouble - and it is only in the worst possible taste that he and his staff attack the people who elected him. I don't know anyone who voted for President Obama in 2008 who now wishes he had voted for Sen. McCain instead; however, almost all of them feel they've been insulted, berated and marginalized by the Obama administration, starting with the inaugural invocation and continuing up to the Rolling Stone interview. Enough. If the only choice I have is between a psychotic republican and a sociopathic democrat - I'm just going to stay home.

Posted by: seabelly1 | September 28, 2010 4:04 PM | Report abuse

Very telling. Is that why some of his advisors are leaving, they weren't serious in the first place?

Posted by: Anders5 | September 28, 2010 4:31 PM | Report abuse

"Obama cracks whip on weak-willed Dems?"

CAPEHART, YOU OF ALL PEOPLE SHOULD KNOW BETTER THAN TO USE THIS TYPE OF SLAVE/PLANTATION SPEECH.

Posted by: COOLCHILLY | September 28, 2010 4:55 PM | Report abuse

This is nothing but Obama's attempt to have it both ways.

If the dems lose either or both houses of Congress, they can blame it on us.

If the dems don't lose, they can claim it's because we followed their orders.

Sorry. I'll continue to state my opinion of the Obama administration's failures and lies. If they don't like it, tough. I'm not about to let some sleazy politicians screw me over and then order me to keep quiet about it.

Posted by: solsticebelle | September 28, 2010 5:02 PM | Report abuse

Outsource the GOP!

If you want a good reason to vote Democratic this fall, consider the fact that the this afternoon voted in lockstep against keeping jobs in the US.

Yes, you read that right. The GOP wants your job to go to India or Pakistan or China or ANYWHERE but the US! The following Senators up for reelection this fall voted to send your job overseas:

Richard Shelby of Alabama
John McCain of Arizona
Johnny Isakson of Georgia
Mike Crapo of Idaho
Chuck Grassley of Iowa
Jim Bunning of Kentucky
David Vitter of Louisiana
Judd Gregg of New Hampshire
Richard Burr of North Carolina
Tom Coburn of Oklahoma
Jim DeMint of South Carolina
John Thune of South Dakota

These guys just showed how much they care if you lose YOUR job- let's make sure they lose THEIR jobs in November!

Posted by: ancient_mariner | September 28, 2010 5:10 PM | Report abuse

A great message from a great administration. As Republicans outsource jobs to China and Iraq, Obama fixes America.

Posted by: TwoTermObama | September 28, 2010 5:17 PM | Report abuse

It's telling that Obama used a metaphor of his base being like children: "But if people now want to take their ball and go home, that tells me folks weren't serious in the first place".

This was precisely the fear actual stalwarth Democrats had in the primaries.

Posted by: Wallenstein | September 28, 2010 5:30 PM | Report abuse

Repost - typo fixed. It's getting very difficult for me even to type the word "Republican."

Outsource the GOP!

If you want a good reason to vote Democratic this fall, consider the fact that the Republicans this afternoon voted in lockstep against keeping jobs in the US.

Yes, you read that right. The GOP wants your job to go to India or Pakistan or China or ANYWHERE but the US! The following Senators up for reelection this fall voted to send your job overseas:

Richard Shelby of Alabama
John McCain of Arizona
Johnny Isakson of Georgia
Mike Crapo of Idaho
Chuck Grassley of Iowa
Jim Bunning of Kentucky
David Vitter of Louisiana
Judd Gregg of New Hampshire
Richard Burr of North Carolina
Tom Coburn of Oklahoma
Jim DeMint of South Carolina
John Thune of South Dakota

These guys just showed how much they care if you lose YOUR job- let's make sure they lose THEIR jobs in November!

Posted by: ancient_mariner | September 28, 2010 5:32 PM | Report abuse

The so-called Democrats like Blanche Lincoln who opposed the public option and have taken every opportunity to serve corporate rather than middle America deserve tongue-lashings from Obama. Why doesn't he go after the people who didn't support important initiatives? The window-dressing that the Dems point to while we are still struggling with high unemployment and foreclosures,36% interest rates on credit cards and double digit increases in health insurance premiums show the ttothlessness of the so-called acomplishments of the current Congress and White House.

Posted by: clary916 | September 28, 2010 5:39 PM | Report abuse

The so-called Democrats like Blanche Lincoln who opposed the public option and have taken every opportunity to serve corporate rather than middle America deserve tongue-lashings from Obama. Why doesn't he go after the people who didn't support important initiatives? The window-dressing that the Dems point to while we are still struggling with high unemployment and foreclosures,36% interest rates on credit cards and double digit increases in health insurance premiums show the ttothlessness of the so-called acomplishments of the current Congress and White House.

Posted by: clary916 | September 28, 2010 5:40 PM | Report abuse

"Outsource the GOP!

If you want a good reason to vote Democratic this fall, consider the fact that the Republicans this afternoon voted in lockstep against keeping jobs in the US.

Yes, you read that right. The GOP wants your job to go to India or Pakistan or China or ANYWHERE but the US! The following Senators up for reelection this fall voted to send your job overseas:

Posted by: ancient_mariner"

A bunch of DEMOCRATS voted for that, too - including one of MY senators.

And Obama wonders why some of us no longer have much use for the Democratic party??

Posted by: solsticebelle | September 28, 2010 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Berating me and others like me serves no purpose. As a group, we are not planning to donate to President Obama's campaign. We don't need to be treated like little children. Obama needs to blame someone because he isn't man enough to blame himself. Rant on, dear sir, you won't have much to talk about come the 2012 election.

Posted by: cougartonyusa | September 28, 2010 5:50 PM | Report abuse

Gee, what a surprise. A black journalist agrees with Obama.

Posted by: kingsbridge77 | September 28, 2010 5:52 PM | Report abuse

The President is right and it is time for Democrats to act like Democrats.

How the Democrats can win in November 2010.

Democratic candidates pledge to support bills in Congress to stop the offshoring of American jobs.

Democratic candidates pledge to support the selection of new Democratic candidate for President in 2012.

Two easy steps to make the Democrats Democrats again and not the party of Republican Lite.

Posted by: bsallamack | September 28, 2010 6:03 PM | Report abuse

Berating me and others like me serves no purpose. As a group, we are not planning to donate to President Obama's campaign. We don't need to be treated like little children. Obama needs to blame someone because he isn't man enough to blame himself. Rant on, dear sir, you won't have much to talk about come the 2012 election.

Posted by: cougartonyusa
.....................
Stop this nonsense and start demanding that Democrats select a new Democratic candidate for President in 2012.

It was done before and it can be done again.

Posted by: bsallamack | September 28, 2010 6:06 PM | Report abuse

Like a good slavemaster obama cracks the whip you mean.

Posted by: j751 | September 28, 2010 6:09 PM | Report abuse

Obama cracks whip?

So now he is the slave-master?

Time for an uprising against the massuh....

Posted by: Jerzy | September 28, 2010 6:16 PM | Report abuse

I note that the Department of Justice is contesting the injunction against continued enforcement of DADT. I also note that Guantanamo Bay is still open for business, the President has actually claimed the authority to assassinate American citizens extrajudicially, and single payer was removed from the table before any bargaining on the Health Care reform began. Perhaps it's not the progressives who aren't serious about changing the country in a more just and humane direction, but rather Mr. Obama.

Posted by: jwzich | September 28, 2010 6:23 PM | Report abuse

Yes, the Democratic malaise is strange, and perhaps dates back to the way Obama got healthcare done, never really taking off the gloves to get the public option that the country so clearly needed. All the same, the GOP has been helping Obama these last few days with political moves so repugnant that even the most apathetic among us realize that it is necessary to hold onto some part of congress in order to prevent political catastrophe: Demint, the Palinistas, Boehner and the corrupt big business boys, the permanent tax cuts for the millionaires and the latest moves to stop outsourcing. The Republicans would be funny if they weren't so sad. But this really is a weird year. They can say and do the most outlandish things (just think of O'Donnell and Angle) and their supporters clap politely instead of howling with disbelief.

Posted by: gposner | September 28, 2010 7:29 PM | Report abuse

"Obama cracks whip on weak-willed Dems"

Odd choice of terms..... invokes imagery of whips, slavery, democrats starting the last civil war, blacks in bondage, democrats writing Jim Crow Law, KKK......

Makes one think of the democrats.......
....so does the 'weak-willed" part....see Obama's Wars excerpts

Posted by: georgedixon1 | September 28, 2010 7:45 PM | Report abuse

Considering that it's us "whining" liberals and progressives who are most vocal in opposing the far-right teabaggers, militia malcontents, secession-loving loons and outright racists blasting Obama as, variously, a "socialist", "Marxist", "dictator" and "secret Muslim", and considering the strategic stupidity of Obama and the Senate Democrats to reward Sen. Palpatine Lieberman with his DHS Committee Chairmanship AFTER he actively campaigned against the Democrats in 2008, I fail to see why we liberals should be more enthusiastic about the party's Congressional accomplishments than the elected Democrats themselves, the same ones now running from those newly enacted laws they helped pass.

Yeah, keeping Lieberman in place sure resulted in a strengthened, not weakened, health care bill, didn't it Mr. Capehart, one that helps more, not fewer, people?

Not prosecuting the Bush Jr/Cheney Administration for it's numerous attacks on our Constitution sure showed that no one is above the law, as did not prosecuting any financial industry CEO's or Boards of Directors for the economic meltdown their policies and practices brought about, as did not aggressively prosecuting contractors like Halliburton, KBR or Blackwater for war-profiteering regarding bad water, spoiled food or showers constructed so shoddily that they fatally electrocuted our troops in Iraq and Afghanistan.

This refusal to hold politically powerful institutions and individuals to legal account means we'll have to depend upon the tender mercies of out-of-control industries to do right by consumers, patients, policy-holders and investors, when those industries should be worried, realistically, about aggressive criminal prosecutions, draconian civil sanctions, fines and penalties and the loss of corporate charters.

And last week's cowardice with the Senate Democrats refusal to hold a vote on the Bush Jr tax cuts also did wonders to buck up an angry or dispirited base, didn't it Mr. Capehart?

Caving in to outright liars and racists-like ACORN video-distorter Andrew Breitbart with his deceptively-edited video of Shirley Sherrod, instead of denouncing them as forcefully and as often as the Obama Administration denounces the Democratic liberal and labor union GOTV base also doesn't result in better policy or legislation Mr. Capehart.

Tell you what, let the Blue Dog Dems-who this Adminstration panders too shamelessly-and their supporters do the Dem GOTV efforts instead of relying on those "whining" liberals the Administration can't slap around hard or publicly enough.

No doubt, the Dems will increase, not decrease, their Congressional presence come election day.

Posted by: kingcranky | September 28, 2010 7:53 PM | Report abuse

The stunningly transparent disingenuous duplicity of Mr. Obama shows a politician in crisis, searching desperately for the next scapegoat for his failures.

Can't help but laugh!
Thanks for making me smile, Mr. Obama...keep on blaming America, BABY!

Posted by: wcmillionairre | September 28, 2010 8:01 PM | Report abuse

Hold off the lecturing, Mr President. We voters pay for performance, not rhetoric. You have done a fairly good job, with some shortcomings. Your opponents are raving fanatics and lunatics. Therefore, We will continue to support your policies. Lay off the self-congratulations, however. Don't expect us to stand up and cheer.

Posted by: samsara15 | September 28, 2010 8:51 PM | Report abuse

"Weak-willed"?

Love it!!!

"Craps whip"?

Yessa Massa>

Posted by: grunk | September 28, 2010 8:52 PM | Report abuse

I don't disagree with President Obama that weak-willed Democrats are a problem in this election.

He's got to first talk the choir before he turns to the congregation.

The problem is that message should have been delivered last week to the House & Senate Dems who decided not to have a vote on the Bush tax cuts. Aren't those the people we elected to fight for us? Did they not just surrender without taking a vote?

What did they have to lose by taking a vote? Absolutely nothing.

I have 4 calls logged last week-, the first to the White House the next two to my senators, and the final to my congressman on that stupidity for not calling a vote. Of the 4 calls, all to Dems, I can count on only 2 being willing to fight for that vote. The other two - including the President and Senator Feinstein - didn't speak up about fighting to END the Bush tax cut for billionaires.

Posted by: boscobobb | September 28, 2010 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Capehart is just another presidential cheerleader - go, team, go! He watched too much Mickey Mouse Club as a child.

The more Obama and Biden criticize the home team the smaller it is going to get. As a professional campaigner - he has been busy polarizing and demonizing the opposition, and then appears completely puzzled why they oppose him.

Posted by: alance | September 28, 2010 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Ize gonna tap dance fo' field boss Capehart cause I don't want no whip crackin' on me.

Posted by: grunk | September 28, 2010 9:02 PM | Report abuse

Mr. President:

I'm one of "the progressive base" that worked so hard and gave so many bucks to you. For 2 years now, I've been listening to Rahm Emanuel and the rest of the DLC left-overs insulting people like me. You don't really expect "the base" that your COS called "f--king retards" to now jump on a Democratic bandwagon, do you?

Even more stupid, you demeaned and exiled Howard Dean, a hero to a lot of us in "the progressive base" with his 50 state strategy. In his place you installed a lackluster flunkie as head of the DNC. If there's no enthusiasm out there for Democratic candidates, maybe putting Tim Kaine in Dean's job had something to do with it.

Posted by: smeesq | September 28, 2010 9:35 PM | Report abuse

The beatings will continue until morale improves...

You convinced me.

Here is a hint...there is a reason you never saw George Bush go on tv and attack his base as a bunch of whiners...

Because it is idiotic...and only a Washington pundit would cheer when someone on his side made such an amateur political mistake...

Posted by: justmy2 | September 28, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

The President of the United States to his fellow Democrats:

The beatings will continue until morale improves.

---

Now, that's leadership!

Posted by: FutureView2010 | September 28, 2010 9:57 PM | Report abuse

I don't disagree with President Obama that weak-willed Democrats are a problem in this election.

He's got to first talk the choir before he turns to the congregation.

The problem is that message should have been delivered last week to the House & Senate Dems who decided not to have a vote on the Bush tax cuts.

Posted by: boscobobb
.........................
I am always amazed at those Democrats that still support this President.

Did it never dawn on these individuals that he was elected President of the United States to run the country.

The President is the one who should have asked Congress LAST YEAR to create legislation to deal with the Bush tax cuts.

But of course this would mean a President that was governing and not simply starting his campaign for reelection.

How the Democrats can win in November 2010.

Democratic candidates pledge to support bills in Congress to stop the offshoring of American jobs.

Democratic candidates pledge to support the selection of new Democratic candidate for President in 2012.

Posted by: bsallamack | September 28, 2010 10:24 PM | Report abuse


One more Barak Bozo on the WaPo soup line.

Posted by: g0tcha | September 28, 2010 10:35 PM | Report abuse


One more Barak Bozo on the WaPo soup line.

Posted by: g0tcha | September 28, 2010 10:36 PM | Report abuse


One more Barak Bozo on the WaPo soup line.

Posted by: g0tcha | September 28, 2010 10:39 PM | Report abuse

It might reenergize us Democrats if Obama rejoined the party.

Posted by: miriamac2001 | September 28, 2010 11:55 PM | Report abuse

He's correct about this. That the right is a pile of nasty idiots only means that people need to bring it back at them. Sure, they've become an uncivil party of no brains, but unless we want to live under a fascist idiocracy, it's time to step up.

Posted by: Nymous | September 29, 2010 1:15 AM | Report abuse

to Mr. Capehart & all you fine DIMocRATS,

it matters NOT what BHO says, as in about a MONTH your reign will be OVER, FINISHED, KAPUT & DONE.

NOTHING that BHO can say/do/agree to/preach about will save either house of Congress from turning GOP. NOTHING!

further, nothing that BHO can say/do will get him a second term, as even many democrats are leaving the current "DIMocRATS party" in droves to become TEA PARTY members in good-standing.
(fyi, some of our best & most active TP members in my county voted for BHO, despite knowing ZILCH about him, because they didn't want McCain. - fyi, we TP folks welcomed the former "moderate to conservative" democrats with open arms.)

i suspect that (even if he chooses to run again - NOT at all a sure thing) HRC will give him a bloody nose in the DIMs primary & then Hillery will be swamped by whomever the TP chooses to run against her in the fall of '12. = in either case, it will NOT be BHO in the WH after 01/20/13.

yours, TN46
coordinator, CCTPP

Posted by: texasnative46 | October 1, 2010 5:15 PM | Report abuse

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