- The Washington Times - Thursday, January 28, 2010

ANALYSIS/OPINION:

The president’s contention that Massachusetts voters elected Scott Brown to the U.S. Senate out of anger left over from the George W. Bush administration is ridiculous. One would think Mr. Obama’s 20-plus-point margin in the 2008 election would be seen as the nexus of that reaction. But no, the anger lingers, the president contends, and the reaction to anger against a Republican president, one year later, is to elect a Republican senator diametrically opposed to the current president’s agenda. According to this argument, all anger is the same. Eureka; we’ve found a basis for bipartisanship: anger.

White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs asks us to accept the idea that an exit poll of 1,000 voters in Massachusetts is more meaningful than the election results representing 2 million voters. I actually empathize with Mr. Gibbs because that’s a tough sell, and somehow he did it with nearly a straight face.

Commentators point to the president’s personal approval ratings. Those ratings are hovering just north of 50 percent now, but unpopular policy ratings will always catch up to - and eventually overtake - personal approval.

The White House seems to think clever presentation of the message will change voters’ reactions. It’s not that we failed to get the message; we’re just not buying it.

Speaking of buying, I don’t think we’re buying the latest version of “Political Spin 2009, Greatest Hits,” either.

DENNIS LANDRY

South Riding, Va.

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