Obamateurism of the Day

When presidents need to relaunch after losing a big midterm election, they like to offer an attractive slogan for their new agenda, in large part to take voters’ minds off of the old, unpopular agenda that created the political setback. After losing more House seats in a midterm than any President in 72 years, Barack Obama needed a new slogan more than most. CBS reported that the White House christened his State of the Union speech as “winning the future”:

President Obama will use tonight’s State of the Union address to issue a broad call for a common ground approach to get the nation’s financial house in order.

Nearly three months after what he described as the “shellacking” suffered by his party in the midterm elections, the president will try to balance a call for job creation and deficit reduction. He will offer his vision to promote hiring with what officials describe as “targeted investments.” He will frame it as a plan for “winning the future.”

As Jim Geraghty points out, most Presidents check to see if anyone else has used the slogan first — perhaps especially someone who’s at least considering a run against the President in question in the next election:

Also, a President who spends as much time talking about the new Internet age as Obama did in his speech last night might have considered that the acronym for his cool new slogan is … WTF.

Got an Obamateurism of the Day? If you see a foul-up by Barack Obama, e-mail it to me at [email protected] with the quote and the link to the Obamateurism. I’ll post the best Obamateurisms on a daily basis, depending on how many I receive. Include a link to your blog, and I’ll give some link love as well. And unlike Slate, I promise to end the feature when Barack Obama leaves office.

Illustrations by Chris Muir of Day by Day. Be sure to read the adventures of Sam, Zed, Damon, and Jan every day!