But generally if you look at how I've tried to govern over the last four years and how I'll continue to try to govern, I'm not driven by some ideological agenda. I am a pretty practical guy. And I just want to make sure that things work. And one of the nice things about never having another election again, I will never campaign again, is I think you can rest assured that all I care about is making sure that I leave behind an America that is stronger, more prosperous, more stable, more secure than it was when I came into office.Well, no, I'm not going to rest assured. Much as I would love these statements to be true, they make me nervous. And that assurance came right after the most partisan thing he said in the whole interview. The moderator, David Gregory, had asked Obama how "frustrated" he was about the difficulty of getting things done with Congress. Gregory asserted that people were constantly coming up to him saying "Don't they realize, all of them, the president, Republicans and Democrats, how frustrated we all are?" And President Obama showed a little irritation:
Well, I think we're all frustrated. The only thing I would caution against, David, is I think this notion of, "Well, both sides are just kind of unwilling to cooperate." And that's just not true. I mean if you look at the facts, what you have is a situation here where the Democratic party, warts and all, and certainly me, warts and all, have consistently done our best to try to put country first.Country first. Where'd he come up with that slogan?
Then Obama started inching away from this assertion that the Democrats are better. He shifts to more neutral boilerplate about trying "to work with everybody involved to make sure that we've got an economy grows" and "Make sure that it works for everybody. Make sure that we're keeping the country safe." Then he retreats again, making abstract concessions (in question form):
And does the Democratic party still have some knee jerk ideological positions and are there some folks in the Democratic party who sometimes aren't reasonable? Of course. That's true of every political party.So are the Democrats better or not? He's melted into squishy blandness. And it's exactly here that he does the not-an-ideologue/practical-guy riff that appears at the beginning of this post.