Weatherdem's Weblog

Bridging climate science, citizens, and policy

What are the White House’s Priorities?

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After reading a Denver Post article that detailed some of the efforts that the Obama White House went to in order to ensure appointed Senator Michael Bennet won his Democratic Primary a couple of days ago, I’m left with that question.

And here’s why: Americans are frustrated with the D.C. culture of doing as little as possible.  Americans voted for Obama in record numbers in 2008 mostly because they wanted to see progress made on a suite of issues that had been left to languish or purposefully decimated in the previous 8 years of the Bush Regime.  Instead of getting things done, as was promised in the 2008 campaigns across America, the White House chose instead to waste months of time in order to get one or two Republicans to vote for bills that were being continually watered down.

The nation’s biggest banks got taxpayer dollars which they used to buy smaller banks and reduce competition.  They’re not lending much of those billions of dollars to small businesses or the people who would spend it and finally get this economy back on track.

Healthcare legislation became a health industry giveaway.  The system remains broken, as Americans will continue to affirm for themselves over the next few years.

No climate legislation will be passed any time soon – and I mean any time in the next few years.  Or at least until climate-related disasters affect more Americans personally.

Guantanamo remains open; we’re still occupying Iraq; we’re still occupying Afghanistan.

Unemployment officially remains near 10%, though the more realistic number hovers nearer 18%.

Real take-home income still hasn’t increased measurably since 1974.

Despite all of the things that weren’t done at all , or were done partway, Obama’s machine has decided to back every incumbent Democrat this year, whether they worked to pass any part of his agenda or not.  A number of those candidates have already failed to win their primaries or are behind enough in the polls that Republican wins are all but guaranteed in 3 short months.

That machine wouldn’t be necessary if the President’s team had decided that America’s agenda needed some attention in 2009 and earlier this year.

I’m not at all sure what Obama expects will get done in 2011-2012 with fewer Democrats in the House, which did a monumental job getting good legislation passed, or the Senate, which is broken.  But if he feels better about himself because his machine helped get a couple incumbents through their primaries, more power to him.


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