Chuck Todd, host of Meet the Press, sat down with Conan O’Brien this week to discuss President Obama and some of the criticisms he makes of the Commander-in-Chief in his new book, The Stranger.
In the interview, Todd admits that he isn’t looking forward to meeting the President face-to-face again, adding that the book is “neither a liberal defense nor a conservative attack.”
He points out that the President hoped to rise above partisanship when he arrived in Washington in 2008, but ultimately, he will “be remembered as a nadir of partisan relations.”
At times, Todd states, “Obama’s arrogance got the better of him.”
Many critical of the President agree, pointing to the “shellacking 2.0” that Democrats received at the polls on November 4 after Obama flatly stated that he was not on the ballot, “but my policies are.”
The President’s approval ratings also hit 39 percent earlier this week, with disapproval cresting 56 percent, Gallup notes.
Still, left-leaning sites like The Daily Beast take issue with the assessment that Chuck Todd makes in The Stranger.
Columnist William O’Connor calls it a “lousy Obama takedown.”
“Time and again, the author confuses chattering class dissatisfaction with an honest assessment of accomplishment. One can think (as many do) that Obamacare, Dodd-Frank and the CFPB, DADT repeal, fuel emission standards, $800 billion stimulus, sunsetting some Bush tax cuts, dropping defense of DOMA, the auto bailout, Lily Ledbetter, student loan reform, the START treaty, and Race to the Top are all bad policy—but they are achievements. In addition, Obama not only passed them, but managed to win reelection, something Jimmy Carter (a frequent comparison Todd makes) failed to do. Yes, there were other significant items on the liberal agenda, but when stacked up against the landmarks of that skilled schmoozer and frenemy specialist Bill Clinton, the diagnosis of Obama’s flaws looks overblown.”
Still, critics point out that under the President’s tenure, Democrats have lost 70 seats in the House and conceded control of the Senate to Republicans, who are coming off all-time lows in favorability ratings. Also, recent videos of the Obamacare architect Jonathan Gruber stating that American voters were “stupid” and that “lack of transparency works to our advantage” on passing the law, has damaged the President’s signature domestic achievement.
With the U.S. Supreme Court also agreeing to take up a toothy Conservative challenge that would end Obamacare subsidies for millions of people in 2015, that achievement’s future could be in question.
Do you think Chuck Todd is right in calling the President “arrogant”?