Let me say at the outset that I don't agree with everything Barack Obama has done as president. Yet I've never in my life agreed with everything any president has done. For that matter, I didn't agree with everything my mom and dad did! From both a pragmatic political and idealistically progressive standpoint, however, there's no doubt this president should serve another four years. I have heard from progressives I respect about their disappointment with aspects of his time in office. It's time to get realistic about what Barack Obama has done as president, and what four years of Mitt Romney will mean for those already struggling (and who progressives are and speak for).
How about we start with President Obama's appointments to the US Supreme Court. I know most voters don't pay attention to this, but think for a moment who John McCain might have appointed, and who Barack Obama actually did. Sonia Sotomayor and Elena Kagan are both solid jurists. The alternative would likely have been a 6-3 conservative court rather than the 5-4 we now have. Oh yeah, and when before in US history have three women sat on the highest court in the land together?
How about we take a look at the Affordable Care Act? Was it perfect? Nope. Yet when all is said and done, double digit millions of Americans will be covered by health insurance. Also, that habit the insurance companies had of dropping your coverage when it suited them is now gone. Plus, parents can keep their kids on their plans to age 26. But here's the most important thing. Barack Obama took the first step in taking us down the road to universal healthcare. That would be where everyone is covered. The first president who tried to get healthcare legislation passed in this country was Teddy Roosevelt. None of us remember him. It's time to stop carping about whether that's the first thing Barack Obama should have done, and whether it's good enough.
Political pragmatism is something it seems Republicans do better than Democrats. When the time came to try to gut this president's agenda, they stood together. It's time for us to stand together the same way. Barack Obama has governed well, and those who those who think this country should be run like an investment firm know this. In the days, weeks, and months ahead, we'll be bombarded with polls, ads, responses to the ads, talking heads, gasbags, and wannabees. Know this. The man to bring this country back to some semblence of economic normalcy isn't Mitt Romney. The man to do that has already sits in the White House. As we move forward, we'll be writing about other things Barack Obama has accomplished for you, me, my kids, and this country. Let the naysayers do their best.
We're better, and so is Barack Obama.