Obamateurism of the Day

What has been Barack Obama’s biggest failure in his term as President?  That’s a question on which we muse constantly in this feature, and on which we poll on a weekly and annual basis.  I’m pretty sure that the President doesn’t cast a vote in those OOTW/OOTY polls (although he’s welcome to do so!), but it sounds as if he’d have some trouble making a decision.  My friend and colleague Katie Pavlich noticed this week that Obama has offered a range of choices when asked the same question by different reporters — what has been his biggest failure?

From 60 Minutes Sunday:

I’m the first one to confess that– the spirit that I brought to Washington, that I wanted to see instituted, where we weren’t constantly– in– in a political slugfest but were focused more on problem solving that, you know, I haven’t fully accomplished that. Haven’t even come close in some cases. And– you know, if you ask me—what’s my biggest disappointment is that we haven’t changed the tone in Washington as much as I would have liked.

From Univision last week:

JORGE RAMOS: What is your biggest failure?

OBAMA: Well, Jorge as you remind me, my biggest failure so far is we haven’t gotten comprehensive immigration reform done, so we’re going to be continuing to work on that. But it’s not for lack of trying or desire.

From ABC News in July:

“The mistake of my first term – couple of years – was thinking that this job was just about getting the policy right,” Obama told CBS News’ Charlie Rose. “And that’s important, but, you know, the nature of this office is also to tell a story to the American people that gives them a sense of unity and purpose and optimism, especially during tough times.”

Katie sums up:

As a recap, President Obama’s “biggest” failure(s) are not telling enough stories, not changing the tone in Washington and not getting immigration reform through (despite having a super majority of Democrats his first two years in office.) Obama didn’t say his biggest failure is not getting people back to work or not turning the economy around as he promised to do.

Well, that may be true.  However, it does look like Obama may be successful in setting up some competition to the OOTD series.

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!

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