In between golf outings, Barack Obama has seen fit to jump into the arena of politics and push his priorities. The problem is that no one else shares those priorities. At a time when there is a host of domestic and foreign policy issues which demand leadership and engagement, Obama goes off into the twilight zone.
In late February, what was happening? You name it! The Wisconsin battle with AWOL Democrats was in full swing. The Congress of the United States was (and is) engaged in back-and-forth exchanges on the budget. Egyptian president Mubarak had already stepped down, and unrest has now spread to Libya.
What does Obama do during this time? He directs his Justice Department to no longer defend the Defense of Marriage Act (DOMA).
Attorney General Eric Holder said President Barack Obama has concluded that the administration cannot defend the federal law that defines marriage as only between a man and a woman. He noted that the congressional debate during passage of the Defense of Marriage Act “contains numerous expressions reflecting moral disapproval of gays and lesbians and their intimate and family relationships – precisely the kind of stereotype-based thinking and animus the (Constitution’s)Equal Protection Clause is designed to guard against.”
So… the Middle East is spiraling into chaos and the Congress is facing the possibility of passing no budget and forcing a government shutdown, and Obama takes action against DOMA?
Now, let’s fastforward a couple of weeks. In early March, the U.S. supported the International Criminal Court for the first time. The Supreme Court voted 8-1 for the right of Rev. Fred Phelps and his members of the Westboro Baptist “Church” to protest during military funerals. A federal judge ruled that Obama’s team must appeal a ruling declaring Obamacare to be unconstitutional in a timely manner. Oh yes, the Middle East is still in chaos. The budget battles continue, and oil prices (and thus, gasoline) are heading up, up, and up.
With all this going on, Obama was spotted on the golf course on the weekend of March 5. The Daily Mail also reported that Barack Obama has now started brewing his own beer. Obama also golfed this past Saturday. Oh yes, Obama did also take time to make a policy statement. As reported in the Arizona Daily Star, Obama penned an op-ed over the weekend focusing on gun control reforms!
I guess Obama figures that with no approved budget, no money in the bank, high unemployment, and rising gas and food prices, the best thing to do was to talk about guns before everyone freaks out.
Even Bill Clinton called the delays in granting offshore oil and gas drilling permits “ridiculous.”
In Michael Barone’s latest column, he notes that as a state senator, Obama voted “present” 129 times. Barone laments that Obama is now voting “present” regarding the budget and Libya as well. Can one vote “present” from a golf course?
Is this the “change” everyone believed in? At least Obama addressed gun control, right? It’s not like there weren’t more pressing matters facing the American people and the entire world.