We Democrats told you Obama wasn't Jimmy Carter!

After the first year of his presidency, it was popular to call Obama the new Jimmy Carter. He appeared far too cautious, dithering, and contemplative. Why did he not speak out more boldly—and more quickly—when Iranians came out into the streets? Why did it take 94 days for him to discuss the proper strategy for Afghanistan, only to be savaged by the right and the left for increasing troop levels while announcing a deadline for withdrawal? Obama’s foreign policy decisions will still be critiqued, and rightly so. But, had Sunday’s mission gone horribly wrong, “Carter” would have tripped off the lips of every pundit. That would have been an obvious political risk to anyone in the room when the president scrapped the idea of a surgical missile strike in favor of an assault led by Navy SEALS. The mission could have gone wrong, but it didn’t. It was judiciously planned. Obama’s helicopters flew straight, and, when they encountered unexpected adversity—one of the helicopters engines stalled—they had a contingency plan to see the mission through successfully. The desire of a president to move decisively, combined with the patience to see to the details: Who is going to call Obama the aloof, contemplative professor now? The comparison to Carter died in Pakistan along with bin Laden.