Chris Matthews asks his panel about one of his favorite topics, how the left wing of the Democratic Party is going to react to more hippie punching and triangulating from President Obama. I think they are underestimating just how sour the mood of the electorate is and the fact that it's not going to get any better if the economy doesn't improve and something isn't done to get people back to work.
As usual with this crowd, the whole conversation amounts to painting going along with corporate or Republican ideas as somehow "centrist" and adult -- and the people who would like more to be done for the working class as out of the main stream. And of course all the dirty f**king hippies will eventually sit down and shut up and do what the adults demand of them. Heaven forbid these guys will ever pass up an opportunity to marginalize liberals.
MATTHEWS: Welcome back. In his speech this week in Tucson and in his deals with Republicans in December, President Obama disengaged some say, triangulated from the left. Which brings us to our big question this week and it's a big one. How's the left wing of the Democratic Party going to react to the president distancing himself from them? Andrew.
SULLIVAN: I think with any luck they'll understand that he has pursued a consistent strategy from the beginning to try to be president of both Americas and this is not different. What this did was I think prove the wisdom of that strategy. You keep being a partisan lefty for the last two years, battling them as Paul Krugman and the left have wanted him to do, he would not have had the standing to do what he did this week.
MATTHEWS: Will they be that understanding, or feel dissed?
O'DONNELL: Well the argument will be made that there was a lot done for the left in the last year and it's time to gear up for the election, so it's time for the left to fall in line.
MATTHEWS: And they'll buy it?
BORGER: You know if you look at the polls 70% of self-identified liberals say that they approve of Barack Obama. So actually he's got a problem with the vocal left and the left of the left, but I think a lot of liberals think he's okay.
SALAM: If you look at any of the issues where you would have expected the left to raise a stink, if you look at Afghanistan, civil liberties, if you look at the incredibly weak financial reform bill we heard absolutely nothing. I think the left has completely acquiescent and they're going to just do pretty much whatever the president wants.
MATTHEWS: Well... such definitive statements.