December 10th, 2010
04:14 PM ET

Letters to the President #690: 'Back to the Future'

Tom Foreman | BIO
AC360° Correspondent

Reporter's Note: President Obama says he’ll still work out a tax deal, despite opposition. I say I’ll still write a letter a day to the White House, whether or not he ever responds.

Dear Mr. President,

With the weekend looming, I’ve been ruminating (and we all know how painful that can be) about all the trick plays I’ve seen in the NFL this year. Weird formations; strange combinations of punts, passes, and kicks; one notable play in which a wide receiver actually caught a cab to another stadium. Well, not really, but it wouldn’t surprise me.

I personally think this is all an offshoot of that astonishing onsides kick by the Saints to start the second half of the Super Bowl. I think that play convinced other coaches to take more unexpected chances, because it proved that such maneuvers really can work even though traditionalists would argue against them.

You’re part of that movement, too. Your campaign, your approach to debates, your ideas about taking on the Democratic establishment to win the nomination were all avant garde. And arguably, where you have stumbled has been in the process of becoming a more traditional, predictable DC politician.

In that sense, and purely from a non-partisan “I’m just interested in interesting things” reporter’s point of view, I am delighted to see how you are hanging in there with your efforts to get some action on the Bush tax cuts. The pundits and other political players here have weighed in ceaselessly with the conventional wisdom about how you are infuriating your base, taking a huge political risk, handing the White House keys to the Republicans, yadda, yadda, yadda.

But just from having watched what you do, I have to say that I think your game is absolutely at its best when you are defying the odds, making surprising rules, and frankly doing just what you said you’d do: Trying to change the way Washington works.

I know this year has been tough for you. I’m sure it’s not easy seeing your approval ratings plummet and being lambasted from both sides of the aisle. But with that comes a certain freedom, don’t you think? A chance to get back to what you said you wanted to do and win back the support of many Americans, even if both major parties find that frustrating. Hey, they’ve frustrated voters enough….turn about is fair play, and if you can be the turner I suspect that will be so much the better for you.

Call if you can. Sorry for getting this to you so late today.


Follow Tom on Twitter @tomforemancnn.

Find more of the Foreman Letters here.

soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. Paul Ernest Show

    Tom, this is not fair. I have nothing to argue nor disagree with you, and it's Friday. I guess I have to wait until next week. Tom, couldn't you try harder to be wrong on this tax issue? The GOP traded our destiny- ability and opportunity to balance the budget, reduce our national debt, and permanently secure the economy, for tax cuts for their business constituency. Soon, they will tell us how everyone else is less patriotic. Palin is warning of "Death panels" and not even aware her GOP governor in Arizona has already set up one, with large chambers,long list, ready to start cremating people alive, rather than treat them.

    December 10, 2010 at 6:37 pm |
  2. Kenneth Close

    All I can say is I guess they never had the NFL before 2008!

    December 10, 2010 at 5:13 pm |