Columnist Peggy Noonan has finally figured out what many of us here in what she calls "the broad, stable, nonradical, non-birther right" have known since mid-2008: You can't trust Barack Obama.
"Something's happening to President Obama's relationship with those who are inclined not to like his policies. They are now inclined not to like him. His supporters would say, 'Nothing new there,' but actually I think there is. I'm referring to the broad, stable, non-radical, non-birther right. Among them the level of dislike for the president has ratcheted up sharply the past few months. ... What is happening is that the president is coming across more and more as a trimmer, as an operator who's not operating in good faith. This is hardening positions and leading to increased political bitterness. And it's his fault, too. As an increase in polarization is a bad thing, it's a big fault."
The shift started on Jan. 20, with the mandate that agencies of the Catholic Church would have to provide services the church finds morally repugnant. The public reaction? "You're kidding me. That's not just bad judgment and a lack of civic tact, it's not even constitutional!" Faced with the blowback, the president offered a so-called accommodation that even its supporters recognized as devious. Not ill-advised, devious. Then his operatives flooded the airwaves with dishonest—not wrongheaded, dishonest—charges that those who defend the church's religious liberties are trying to take away your contraceptives.
Noonan is right about the deviousness and dishonesty that Obama displayed in the contraceptives episode, but as a member of the broad, stable, Right, I would argue with her characterization that this episode is when the scales fell from our eyes and we began to see Obama as a deeply dislikable guy.
It was fairly clear to many of us on the Right even before the 2008 election that Barack Obama was a hardcore left-winger masquerading as a centrist (in other words, a liar), and that, for all his charisma and smooth style, he was exactly what his resume said he was: a "community organizer" steeped in the Chicago way - a no-holds-barred political style that relies on deception, intimidation and corruption.
What is happening more recently is that the American people are seeing the real Obama on display more and more. Fake Obama talks about protecting religious liberty and assures the Catholic Church they won't be forced to pay for birth control and abortion-causing drugs for employees. Real Obama makes the political calculation that he can knife the Catholic Church in the back and rally feminists to his cause, the Constitution be damned.
It's the Chicago way. The Right knew who Obama was. What's happening now is, the moderate middle is finally waking up to it, too.
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