Obama Governing From the Center

The surest sign that a Democrat serving as President of the United States is heading for the center of the American political spectrum is when he plays the foreign policy card. And President Obama has clearly signaled his intention to govern from the foreign policy center since taking office. The troop surge in Afghanistan, and the renewed relationships with India and Pakistan that enable much more aggressive anti-terrorist activity in that part of the world, both signal that this Commander-in-Chief is very much taking the fight to those who would do harm to our homeland. Even the recent nuclear arms agreement with the Russians signals that this President intends to exploit the Presidential advantage in foreign policy.

On the domestic front, President Obama has nowhere more clearly headed for the political center than he has in his recent action to allow off-shore drilling along our coastlines. The fact that he has displeased some on both ends of the political spectrum in taking this action — environmentalists think he went too far and the “drill, baby, drill” crowd thinks he didn’t go far enough — is a recent example of his “getting it right,” non-ideological approach to governance.

But this is not a recent phenomenon. The Recovery Act included tax cuts for individuals and small business. Health reform featured subsidies for individuals and small businesses, as well as a role for the States in implementing the new health care laws. Recent “jobs bills” also featured incentives targeted to small business, including tax cuts for hiring the unemployed.

Last year, the President called for a spending freeze on discretionary federal spending, and the Congress approved the pay-go rules that were key to bringing the budget into balance during the Clinton administration. With pay-go rules in place, spending increases passed by the Congress need to be offset by spending reductions or tax increases. Once the economy picks up, watch for the President to flex his fiscal responsibility muscles and begin to enforce pay-go rules aggressively.

Jonathan Cykman, EzineArticles.com Basic PLUS Author

About cykman

Jon Cykman works in Washington, DC as a consultant, and is long-time student of American Politics. He started out handing out campaign materials for Hubert Humphrey during the campaign of 1968, and later went on to earn a B.A. in Political Science from the State University of New York, College at Purchase in 1978, and an M.A. in Public Affairs from the University of Texas, Lyndon B. Johnson School of Public Affairs in 1980. Jon retired from Federal Service after 31 years of service, and lives with his family in Catonsville, MD.
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9 Responses to Obama Governing From the Center

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  3. united says:

    Obama is probably the most centrist president we have had in the last 10 administrations. You need to look at what he is doing and not the way it is spun on TV. The crime here is that Americans have become so hypnotized by the box in our living rooms that we no longer think about the actions of our leaders. Obama is just as plugged into the Military Industrial Complex as Bush was. Obama is continuing almost all of the Bush era policies (except for Nukes and Gays in the Military). He is even expanding Afghanistan and now opening up more oil drilling of all things. Americans need to get informed rather than hypnotized.

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