Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Big Dog

He's back! And he won't back down.

With Republicans scheming to divide them and reporters reviving silly 2008 storylines to predict disaster, former President Clinton and President Obama got the last laugh: Obama joined his predecessor on stage, for his first appearance in Charlotte. Clinton actually bowed to Obama when the president came out. It wasn’t clear whether it was a bow of deference, or of a proud performer to an appreciative audience. You could both men them savoring the way they’d confounded the trouble-makers.

Republicans will rue the day they dragged Bill Clinton into this fight with their welfare reform lies and their silly claims that Obama is a socialist defiling Clinton’s centrist legacy. Clinton can say things Obama can’t. He vividly laid out the depth of the economic challenge his successor faced –as well as the right-wing hatred. “Though I often disagree with Republicans,” said the man who was impeached by the other party, “I never learned to hate them the way the far right that now controls their party seems to hate our president.” The Republicans’ “number one priority,” he said, “was not to put America back to work, it was to put the president out of work.” By contrast Obama, he said, was “committed to constructive cooperation –heck, he even appointed Hillary!”

Clinton also summed up the 2012 campaign more clearly than any other surrogate: “We believe that ‘we’re all in this together’ is a far better philosophy than ‘you’re on your own.’”

Last night, President Clinton completed the picture that Harry Reid and Michelle Obama started drawing. President Obama did try to include Republicans in "grand bargains" and "bipartisan solutions". They said no. Even when he was putting together tangible solutions to our economic woes, they kept saying no.

Yet now, these same "TEA" fueled Republicans want us to forget their role in stalling economic recovery so they can finish what George W. Bush started? This is where Clinton and Obama want voters to say no to the G-O-TEA. And perhaps in the coming weeks, their wish will finally be granted.

What President Clinton did last night was astounding. He took every argument that Mitt Romney has been using against President Obama, then he debunked it, turned it on its head, and fully discredited Romney like no one else could. After all, who would understand the challenges of building lasting economic recovery better than someone who actually made it happen?

As Salon's Joan Walsh suggested above, Team Romney must be regretting the day they pulled "Big Dog" Clinton into their fight. In his case, his bark and his bite can really pack a potent punch. And they did last night- for Obama.

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