He only began to really brag on the economy Tuesday night, when he felt certain of the numbers, rather than before the midterms, when it might have helped his party. He could have done a better job all along explaining where we stood and where we were hopefully headed. As one top White House official says about the Obama inner circle, “They’d rather be right than win.”
He’s alone on the stage — always his preferred setting. As an isolato, he can say what he thinks and define himself on his own terms. He can ascend to the mountaintop and ignore us when we pester him to come down.
He doesn’t have to negotiate with Republicans anymore. He doesn’t have to stroke Democrats anymore. He doesn’t have to hawk himself to voters anymore. He isn’t concerned about Hillary, as he yanks the party to the left. He has forged no lasting links to foreign leaders. And he can have the “vacation from the press” that he told NBC News’s Chuck Todd he yearns for.
“Barry got his groove back,” as Larry Wilmore, the droll host of Comedy Central’s “The Nightly Show,” put it.