John L. Stokes: Not-so-good legacy

October 19, 2013 

President Obama is right about one thing. Congress knew well ahead of time of the looming budget deadline, but then so did he. Now he strolls down a White House hallway to a podium to address the press or the American people. He is like a Monday morning quarterback criticizing the Republicans, which is all too easy to do, but at the same time accomplishes nothing. Where was his vaunted leadership weeks before the shutdown to present to Congress a plan, and a willingness to compromise, thus demonstrating a mutual respect, not to mention an open mind? Didn’t happen!

Thus the president left it entirely up to congressional leaders to lead. Perhaps he surrendered this presidential role because of his previous displeasure in attempting to work with House Speaker John Boehner. Entirely possible, but that could work both ways. Or maybe he wanted to protect his one “accomplishment” as president, Obamacare.

It was, however, Sen. Harry Reid who maneuvered this complex and critically expensive bill through Congress while Democrats still had (by one vote) the majority. Now millions of people can’t even sign up for this care package because no one in the White House planned ahead. Congress has earned its precipitous rating, barely breaking the 10 percent barrier of approval, but there is ample blame to climb all the way to the White House.

John L. Stokes


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