Almost since the end of the Inaugural Parade, liberals have been carping that the Obama Administration was not doing enough, not pushing through sufficiently progressive policies, not enacting the “change” these same liberals thought they were voting for.
Yesterday, the Congress passed an overhaul of the financial sector that can only be considered historic. Obama has already signed health care reform into law, a goal that has eluded previous Democratic presidents, and one Republican, Richard Nixon, for more than fifty years. He enacted a stimulus bill that not only saved millions of jobs, it played a key role in stopping the free-fall the economy was in last year, showing that the government would do what it takes to confront the crisis. There is still hope that this year the President will sign climate change legislation and immigration reform. What more do liberals want?
I know, I know. They have a list. They want restrictions on abortion lifted. They want gay marriage enacted. They want an end to the war in Afghanistan. Who knows what else. Not only would these policies have precisely zero chance of getting through the Congress, they would alienate long-time Democrats like me. I care deeply about core Democratic issues such as health care reform, unions, supporting the rights, and the families, of immigrants, etc. But, I also come from the liberal internationalist wing of the Democratic Party that believes the war in Afghanistan is just. I am content to leave gay marriage to the states and think even there it sets back the rights of gays in some states to make it easier for gays in others. And, as regular readers know, I am a proud pro-life Dem.
So, liberals, here is my advice: Take ‘Yes’ for an answer. This President has delivered more than you had any right to expect. Already, we can write the first sentence of his biography, which will be about health care reform. Now, with financial sector reform, the President has done another difficult thing for the country. Liberals are winning. They need to learn to complain less.