Imagine that a prominent Republican strategist advised members of his party to “go for the throat” and “declare war” on the Democrats. No need to imagine. That very prescription was advocated on Sunday.
Only it wasn’t a Republican strategist who prescribed it. It wasn’t even a Democratic strategist. It was CBS news director John Dickerson. It was a reprise of a column he wrote at Slate on Friday, in which he advised:
The president can stir up these [needed] fights by poking the fear among Republicans that the party is becoming defined by its most extreme elements, which will in turn provoke fear among the most faithful conservatives that weak-willed conservatives are bending to the popular mood.
In Dickerson’s world, Republicans have proved so intransigent that Obama’s only option is to decimate them. “There’s no indication,” he further opined, “that the president’s clashes with House Republicans will end soon,” adding:
The president who came into office speaking in lofty terms about bipartisanship and cooperation can only cement his legacy if he destroys the GOP. If he wants to transform American politics, he must go for the throat.”
It’s an interesting perspective, especially coming from a member of the mainstream media, whose job is supposedly to report the news.
It also makes a presumption that is open to debate: the idea that Obama ever made good on his promise of enhanced “bipartisanship and cooperation.”
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