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 Schoen: Obama's Speech Designed to Rally His Base

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PostSubject: Schoen: Obama's Speech Designed to Rally His Base    Mon Sep 19, 2011 3:55 pm

Schoen: Obama's Speech Designed to Rally His Base

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In a sharply partisan speech widely viewed as a bid to shore up his left-wing support, President Barack Obama attacked House Speaker John Boehner for taking a “my-way-or-the-highway” attitude to budget negotiations, while threatening to wield his veto pen against any Republican budget reforms that he deems unfair.

Obama also rejected the notion that his proposed “Buffett rule” to tax wealthier Americans amounts to class warfare.

“Either we gut education and medical research or we’ve got to reform the tax code,” he says. “This is not class warfare — it’s math. The money has to come from someplace.”

“Obama is now just as concerned with politics as he is with substance,” Democratic pollster and Fox News commentator Doug Schoen told Newsmax after the president’s speech today. “This is as much about the election next year as it is about balancing the budget and creating jobs this year.

“Class warfare and tax increases are all about setting up the Republicans for political attacks, not bipartisan cooperation — as the rhetoric in today's speech made clear,” Schoen said.

Schoen’s view that Obama’s speech, in which the president promised to shave $3 trillion over the next decade from the deficit, in part by raising $1.5 trillion in new tax revenue mostly on the backs of wealthier Americans, was a political exercise rather than a viable policy proposal was widely echoed across the political spectrum.

Center for Politics Director Larry J. Sabato of the University of Virginia tells Newsmax: “There's no question the speech was fundamentally political. The White House knows there is no chance most of this package can pass the Republican House, maybe even the Senate. So why do it?

“If Obama is to win a second term, he has to re-energize his Democratic base, which has been in a funk, and also attract back millions of Independents that have left his camp,” Sabato explains. “Polling shows the millionaire's tax strongly appeals to both groups.”

The Washington Post reported that it “amounts more to an opening play in the fall debate over the economy than another attempt to find common ground with the opposing party.”

Politico.com said the speech “reads more like a blueprint for shoring up his restless Democratic base than a vehicle for reaching across the aisle in search of bipartisan compromise.”

Read more in the article!

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