Democrats wonder: Maybe Obama should be bolder on the economy

“The president has shown himself unwilling to just dig in on a position,” said Dee Dee Myers, who was Bill Clinton’s White House press secretary. “He’s for jobs. I’ve heard him say that. He’s for being the grown-up in the room. But beyond that, I’m not actually sure what his bottom line is.”…

Peter Fenn, a longtime Democratic strategist, said the even-keeled president has “got to be a lot less keep-it-cool Calvin Coolidge and a lot more give-’em-hell Harry Truman.”

“There has got to be a willingness to get tough with the Republicans, especially the tea party wing,” Fenn said…

One reason the White House may not want to shift gears now is that doing so would “tacitly acknowledge that his first-term program didn’t deliver the prosperity his economic team promised,” said Robert J. Shapiro, who was the top economic adviser to Bill Clinton’s 1992 presidential campaign. “The truth is, everybody in the country thinks it failed. It worked to rescue us from a depression, but it didn’t work to create a strong recovery.”