On Wednesday, President Obama delivered a speech (transcript) outlining his vision for economic policy in the remainder of his term. The speech drew much dissatisfaction even among the most liberal stalwarts since the themes and policies offered have been recycled many times during his administration.
NBC’s Chuck Todd coined the term “déjà pivot” in describing how many times the White House has harnessed the same theme of refocusing on the economy:
Report from the Washington Post:
It’s not that President Obama’s big economic speech was bad. It’s that it was, unexpectedly, a warm-up rather than the main event. Obama said it himself. “Let me give you a quick preview of what I’ll be fighting for and why,” he told the crowd. The meat of Obama’s economic policy agenda will be unveiled in a series of speeches over the next several weeks.
So don’t look to this speech for the details of the policy. Look to it for the signal of the “pivot.”
“Pivot” is the word Washington likes to use when a White House stops talking about one thing and begins talking about another thing. In this case, the speech was billed as President Obama’s “pivot” back to jobs.
In almost all cases — this one included — the idea of that kind of “pivot” is nonsense. The “jobs” tab didn’t disappear from the White House Web site in recent months. It was still there, and if you clicked on it, you’d see a link for “the blueprint,” and if you clicked on that, you’d see links to a series of plans all of which included vastly more policy proposals than Wednesday’s speech.
Any thoughts on this topic? Certainly if the economy continues at the current pace, it will be a driving issue in 2014 and 2016. Is the President heading in the right direction or is this more of the same?