This was kind of a refreshing moment. Rachel Maddow interviews Ray LaHood, one of the two remaining Republicans in Obama's cabinet. He confirms that Senator Judd Gregg, the Republican who accepted the nomination to be Obama's Commerce Secretary and just yesterday backed out, actually approached the Obama team about becoming a member of Obama's cabinet. This little episode is "odd," indeed. What's interesting is the candour from LaHood who is clearly not impressed by Gregg's act. The irritation was evident. Judd Gregg has to be one of the major wankers of late on the political scene anywhere for having pulled this indecisive and ungracious stunt. It's not clear that Obama could have seen this Hamlet act coming.
And here's a bit of a verdict in a NY Times article on the issue of Obama's pursuit of bipartisan support thus far:
Their unrequited overtures to Republicans over the past several weeks taught Mr. Obama and his aides some hard lessons. Advisers concluded that they allowed the measure of bipartisanship to be defined as winning Republican votes rather than bringing civility to the debate, distracting attention from what have otherwise been major legislative victories. Although Mr. Obama vowed to keep reaching out to Republicans, advisers now believe the environment will probably not change in coming months.After only a few weeks, it's become pretty clear that Republicans are just not going to meet Obama's gestures with much enthusiasm at all. Check out the second half of this video for some incredible Republican oratory on the House floor yesterday:
OK, maybe Judd Gregg's not the biggest Republican wanker around...clearly his House colleagues are in a league of their own...:)