June 29th, 2011
06:04 PM ET

Letters to the President: #891 'The re-election tango'

Reporter's Note: President Obama held a news conference this morning. Hopefully he is holding my latest letter to the White House this afternoon.

Dear Mr. President,

Once again, I have been given clear evidence of why I would make a terrible president. Not that I needed any more, but still…

I watched your press conference today and saw how, time and again, you went dancing around the edges of issues, never quite taking a stand while simultaneously never quite making it clear that you won’t, and I thought, “No way.” I just couldn’t do it. If I were in that position, I would feel compelled to just lay it all out there and let the chips fall where they may.

Related: Obama pushes GOP on taxes in debt ceiling talks

Gay marriage? War in Libya? The drop dead date for raising the debt ceiling? I’d be throwing my honest assessments out so fast that reporters would be asking me to shut up for a minute so they could file news bulletins on a half dozen subjects. By the time I was done everyone in the room would be asking if I’d decided re-election was just not in my future.

It’s not like I would want to infuriate various public interest groups (although I am certain I would) but rather…well, as a member of the public, that’s the kind of candor I want from my leaders, Democratic and Republican. I find myself yearning for anyone in elected office who will simply say definitively what he or she believes, whether or not it costs that person re-election.

Yet time and again, when big league Washington players start talking, they slide into a tortured tango of positioning driven by pollsters, campaign advisors, and a whole slew of people who I’m not sure have the best interests of the nation at heart…at least not if those best interests must include the slightest chance of their client losing his or her office.

I’m not wrecking on you. I’m wrecking on the culture of the whole town - which, I might point out, is precisely the way you were elected in the first place. Something to keep in mind as the election year draws closer, and those voices of “caution” sound louder in your ears.

Hope all is well.


Follow Tom on Twitter @tomforemancnn.

Find more of the Foreman Letters here.

soundoff (2 Responses)
  1. nadine sanford

    This comment is for the gentleman with the letter to the President . You are correct you could not be President going off half cocked with your opition.. You have no Idea what he has to deal with. People fail to realize that he inherited all the debt from the former president. Things will not be fixed over night . Former President had eight years to create this mess, Give this president time to correct it.

    June 29, 2011 at 7:24 pm |
    • Maria

      Tom, would make a great President! The majority of Americans are fed-up with the campaign speeches and want the truth not this run around! We are also sick of this blame Bush nonsense!
      You can't fix something by throwing good money after bad!
      Obama has been in office long enough to take responsibility for his own failed policies, because he takes the credit for the good things that would not have happened if not for Bush policies(info that led to Bin Ladin)!
      Government is bigger than ever and it spends more than ever! Obama has spent more in a couple of months than President Bush did in all his 8 years in office and this administration has more Czars than Russia has ever had!
      So, I say no to giving him more time; four years is long enough!

      June 29, 2011 at 11:08 pm |