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November 2nd, 2012
08:30 PM ET

Letters to the President #1383: 'Changing course'

Reporter's Note: I write to President Obama every day. He never writes back. It seems to work that way.

Dear Mr. President,

So New York City decided to cancel the big marathon late this evening. As a dedicated runner with a fair number of friends who were set the run, I understand their disappointment. You train for many months for such an event. You invest effort, money, and scads of time. But that said, I also understand how officials ultimately concluded that canceling was the best decision.

Deciding what to do in difficult times is never easy, and there is no playbook. Heck, who am I telling? I guess every president knows that. Often the circumstances of the moment can be interpreted in widely different ways, and deciding which course of action is best is tough.

I imagine that is how you’ve felt each time a jobs report has come out, as it did this morning. On one hand, any progress is a good thing, at least compared to losing ground. On the other hand, when the progress is slow (as this as undeniably been) you have to wonder from time to time if the path you’ve chosen is really the best.

Certainly Governor Romney would have people believe it is not. He’d love to see Americans, en masse, turning against you and your policies. But despite the creeping progress of the recovery, they’ve seemed disinclined toward that. That’s good news for you. Hard luck for him.

Still, if you emerge from this election as the winner, I think you might want to at least think very hard about how we are progressing on the jobs front and once again ask yourself what I am sure you have asked many times: Is there something else we can do? Free of the campaign perhaps you’ll have some new inspirations.

Maybe not…but it’s worth a shot.

I hope all is well. Call if you get a moment.

Regards,
Tom

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