No-Drama Obama Is a Little Too Calm These Days

Brownstein: The '94 vote jolted Clinton, but Obama seems unfazed
By John Johnson,  Newser Staff
Posted Oct 29, 2010 10:49 AM CDT
No-Drama Obama Is a Little Too Calm These Days
President Obama speaks in the East Room of the White House in Washington, Wednesday, Oct. 27, 2010, during a Domestic Violence Awareness Month event.   (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

Plenty of pundits have drawn parallels to what happened to Bill Clinton in 1994 and what's about to happen to Barack Obama and the Democrats on Tuesday. At the National Journal, Ronald Brownstein notes one key difference: Clinton "seemed tormented" on the eve of those elections, while Obama "appears remarkably at peace." And while that's probably better for his blood pressure, it may not be great politically in the long run.

The big losses in '94 caused Clinton to dramatically reassess his governing style and his advisers, and that ultimately led to the "rehabilitation of his presidency." The ever-pragmatic Obama seems content to roll on with no major changes, writes Brownstein, who thinks it could be a mistake. "What Obama shares most with his predecessor is the need to challenge his own assumptions. For Obama, more agonizing now might mean less of it in 2012." (More President Obama stories.)

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