Via Mark Halperin, a little Friday afternoon truth from ex-Clintonista Howard Wolfson. He’s right, of course, and everyone knows it, which is why it was so mystifying for The One to hedge last week on whether the mosque should be built after his paean to religious freedom at the Ramadan dinner. It looks pathetically weak and it won’t save him with anyone: Low-information voters who saw the clip from the dinner will simply conclude that he’s pro-mosque and high-information voters who noticed his hedge don’t believe that he’s hedging for any reason other than pure, cynical political expedience. I can understand why he does this in the gay marriage context because that’s a topic he takes pains to stay away from. But if you’re going to do the big base-pleasing speech in front of the cameras at the dinner, why on earth would you water it down afterwards? It loses you points with the left and earns you nothing with the right since both sides, a la Wolfson here, see it for the political gambit that it is. Baffling.

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Tags: Barack Obama