“The president has turned out to not be as progressive as we hoped him to be,” said John Aravosis, a Democratic political consultant and gay activist. “I don’t think he’s been fierce. I don’t think he likes to advocate very much.”
Mr. Aravosis and others have long complained that the White House is tacking to the center. The stimulus law was too small, they say, and the health-care law should have had a public option. And folks here said they’re still unhappy despite some victories, including the repeal of the ban on gays serving openly in the military.
Immigration activist Felipe Matos, who wants Congress to pass immigration reform legislation, said Mr. Obama will have to do more than give speeches to win the Latino vote next year. “He went to Puerto Rico to speak to the Puerto Ricans in Florida,” Mr. Matos said of President Obama’s four-hour stop in San Juan on Tuesday. “He’s onto something, and we’re onto him. We are not a type of people that you want to mess around with.”