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I’m Back! Thoughts on Obama-Biden Inauguration


I’m back! I stopped blogging over a year ago after starting work in the New York State legislature.

But, on the occasion of the President’s inauguration, I figured there would be no better time than now to start blogging again.

I think that the President is staking out his claim as a true, progressive President. If you listened to the President’s inaugural address, you heard the nation’s leader thread through the history of struggle among historically disadvantage people, including recent generation immigrants, women (with respect to gender equality, pay equity), ethnic minorities (with respect to civic rights, including the right to vote, among others), along with lesbian, gay, trans-gender and bisexual Americans. You heard a President reaffirm that, although he is often labeled as a center-right Republican, at heart, he IS committed to progress for, what many call “the least of these.” This makes him a “progressive.”

But, will his governance match the rhetoric from his speech?

Remember, Democrats do not control the House, because, well, we stayed home in 2010 and allowed the first woman Speaker of the House to lose her job. Let’s look to a  recent example as a guide. After the shootings in Newtown, Connecticut, the President tasked Vice President Biden with coming up with proposals – executive and legislative actions which he adopted. They include 23 separate executive orders and legislation to increase background checks and to close the gun show loophole, among others. If passed, universal background checks would be instated, and the assault weapons ban (which Biden originally passed in the 90s) would be reinstated.

With this move, the President’s shown a willingness to use the full power of his office to implement progressive policies. At least, progressive vis-a-vis the Republican Party political strategy (and platform?) of “No.”

We’ll see. Let me know your thoughts.

Until next time!


2 Comments

  1. DCInsider says:

    I believe in progress and support part of the Presidents agenda. But even I am concerned about some overly liberal parts of his agenda.
    But mainly I don’t understand why He has not done enough to reach out to black men other than his criticism years ago during Father’s Day towards absent black fathers, where he sounded like the media and conservatives who stereotype black men. President Obama had an absent father but even he himself praised his father and dedicated a book to him. Also he has not officially reached out to the black community other than hanging with rich black celebrities. I believe he might let his celebrity status get the best of him. I don’t understand how you can openly say you are a Christian and support homosexualiy….but I guess since religion is man made it too can be altered to fit the times. Lastly I have a hard time as a struggling minority seeing the fruit of the work he has supposed to have done. I love the man and voted for him twice but what has he really done? I am lost. I hope I can see some real change this term.

    • DCInsider,

      I hear you man. I think that we all are frustrated by the President, but I think we also harbor unreal expectations for what he can do. Only he (and his strategist) know why he hasn’t adopted the Cornel West / Tavis Smiley approach and given a national address on poverty- which I think would be useful. But, at the end of the day, it is about results. A lot of times, results are out of control of the President. For example, I don’t think it’s likely that he unilaterally causes employers across the country to increase hiring of black men, or causes increase educational attainment of black men. If there are concrete steps to take in this direction, I’d love to hear them.

      Also, I’m a bit confused by you having problems with “overly liberal” parts of his agenda, when these would be the very policies that would address the issues you raised. I don’t think Obama is overly liberal, I think he is a moderate, progressive. I think he should be MORE liberal on many issues.

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