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The President I always wanted

What really attracted me to Obama during the campaign was common sense. He said he wasn’t an ideologue. He said there was stuff to do, and by golly, he was going to do that stuff, and get it done, and he would do so bipartisanly. It didn’t work out so well.

For the first year, I thought he was crazy. Principled, but crazy. It looked like he’d brought the proverbial knife to a gun fight, like he was playing chess on a rugby pitch, like he was quoting Shakespeare when all anyone really wanted was fart jokes.

If I were him, I would have dropped the gloves a long time ago and started nut-punching. The Republicans have been so incredibly destructive over the last few years that it almost seemed like a moral imperative to destroy them back. But now there’s this hour-long video of Obama wading into a meeting of Republican lawmakers, taking their questions, and absolutely devastating them the way only a former law professor can:

After watching this video, I’m starting to think that I underestimated Obama, severely. He wasn’t just mouthing talking points when he boosted bipartisanship in the campaign. The man was stone-cold serious. Bipartisanship really is his philosophy of governance, and (like it or not) he’s demonstrated that repeatedly by including Republican proposals in legislation passed by Democrats.

By fielding their questions clearly and firmly, Obama managed to reveal the Republicans for the nincompoop, hypocrite obstructionists that they really are, while at the same time inviting them to join him in moving the country forward. This was a display of not only incredible political savvy, but profound intellect. After watching this, I really think there’s a chance that Obama will turn out to be one of the great, historically-important presidents of the United States of America.

I also think Republicans will never, ever again let themselves be filmed asking Obama questions.