April 9th, 2010
Obama is now arguing that government is not evil
As a candidate, Barack Obama pledged to “make government cool again.” After a year that gave birth to the anti-government tea party movement, the president can hardly claim to have succeeded.
Now, Obama appears to be embracing a humbler goal: making the case that government is necessary.
Obama has always advocated a role for government in improving people’s lives. But with anti-government sentiment boiling over amid continued high unemployment — and tax-filing day approaching, likely touching off renewed tea party protests — Obama has been addressing the issue more pointedly. He’s not just speaking in favor of what government can do and offering gentle defenses of government intervention. He’s also taking direct note of the rhetoric on the other side, calling it out and trying to shoot it down.
“You’re hearing a lot of talk these days about government, and government is terrible, and bureaucrats, and they’re taking over and all this stuff. Look, I don’t want government any more than is necessary,” Obama told voters at a town hall in North Carolina last week.
He noted there’s a limit to what private companies can do — and it doesn’t include building roads or paying for public defense.
“That’s where government comes in,” he said.