Bruce Bartlett: Obama Is And Always Has Been A Moderate Conservative
Former Reagan and Bush 41 official Bruce Bartlett got lots of criticism for his article proclaiming Barack Obama a moderate conservative. Among his arguments:
- His stimulus bill was half the size that his advisers thought necessary;
- He continued Bush’s war and national security policies without change and even retained Bush’s defense secretary;
- He put forward a health plan almost identical to those that had been supported by Republicans such as Mitt Romney in the recent past, pointedly rejecting the single-payer option favored by liberals;
- He caved to conservative demands that the Bush tax cuts be extended without getting any quid pro quo whatsoever;
- And in the past few weeks he has supported deficit reductions that go far beyond those offered by Republicans.
Obama has been praised by many conservatives and won 20% of the conservative vote in 2008. He kept on much of the Bush 43 security personnel and didn’t exactly surround himself with liberal advisors.
Looking at Obama’s national security team, foreign policy hawk Max Boot professed himself “gobsmacked.” Most of them, he admitted, “could just as easily have come from a President McCain.” On economic policy, many conservatives expressed comfort with Obama advisers Paul Volcker, Larry Summers, Austan Goolsbee, and Jason Furman.
In fact, Obama hasn’t reversed Bushism, any more than Eisenhower reversed the New Deal or Nixon reversed the Great Society even though that’s what their supporters expected. When will the right stop calling him a left-wing, radical communist/marxist?Click here for reuse options!
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