You can always tell when it's election time: President Obama suddenly starts talking about the economy, and, weirdly, God.
The president once said he was going to focus on the economy like a laser beam. Then, he started pushing things like free health care for everyone, and amnesty for all illegal aliens (along with a wide-open border anyone can just walk across). He made the LGBT issue huge (an important issue — to the less than 5 percent of people who are LGBT).
All of a sudden, though, he's talking about God, faith, the economy, job training, community college, and most important of all, he's begging his sycophantic followers to vote on Election Day.
Just yesterday, the president twice figured out a way to work God and faith into his campaign-style speech in Kansas City.
Just after he began, a woman in the balcony stood and called out to the president. "Jesus is the God of Israel. He is fully God," she said.
At least according to the pool reporter who was traveling with the president. The White House stenos sent out a transcript that said:
"AUDIENCE MEMBER: (Inaudible.)
"THE PRESIDENT: I'm sorry, what are you hollering about?
"AUDIENCE MEMBER: (Inaudible) to God —
"THE PRESIDENT: I believe in God. Thanks for the prayer. Amen. Thank you. (Applause.)
"AUDIENCE: We love you! We love you!" Yes, that the White House stenos heard.
Mr. Obama then segued into a bit about who serves the best barbecue in Kansas City. But not two minutes later, he was back on God and faith. Telling the story of Victor Fugate, a graduate of Evangel University whom he dined with the evening before, the president threw a bone to Christians.
"Victor described how he got through some tough times because of his Christian faith and his determination — which are things that government programs and policies can't replace." He threw in a bit more near the end of his speech: "There are good people out here. Everybody is out there trying to do their best, trying to look after their families, trying to raise their kids, trying to give something back — working with their church, working with their synagogues, working with their places of faith."
In the election cycle, Mr. Obama cares about faith. But not so much any other time, as first lady Michelle recently explained: "We really try to use Sunday as a family downtime where we can kind of breathe and catch up, and maybe take a little nap every now and then, if we're not working," she said on in April on a morning talk show. "We could be loungin' and nappin'," she added.
And he also cares about the economy and the plight of Americans — every two years. He touted the creation of 10 million jobs, the lowest unemployment rate since 2008, manufacturing, energy, technology and the auto industry — "They're all booming."
Of course, he didn't mention the millions of young Americans forced to move back in with their parents, the 3 percent plunge in the economy's growth over the first three months of the year, or that fact the the middle class is poorer than it has ever been, having lost a quarter of its wealth since he was elected.
And, as always, he bashed Republicans for holding up his agenda (despite the fact that Democrats in the Senate have refused to vote on the 40-some jobs bills House Republicans have sent to the chamber).
But this time around, there's always something else new: A real and powerful disdain for the president.
"As the motorcade approached the theater, a man in a white T-shirt could be seen holding a poster with "Cease-Fire Gaza-Israel Stop Killing" written on it, his other hand in a peace sign," the pool reporter wrote as they rolled into Kansas City.
"That proved to be only a preview of what was waiting about a minute later outside the theater," she wrote.
A sampling of the signs: "Free Gaza"; "OBAMA — Our HOPE was CHANGE of policy that favored Financial & War CRIMINALS"; "Obomba — STOP funding Zionist murderers and their apartheid state! STOP your drone murder program and prosecution of whistleblowers exposing crimes!"; "Jobs For Taxpayers Not Drug Cartels"; "Bus Illegals Home"; "Nobama He's Not My President."
Come to think of it, perhaps that's why Mr. Obama is turning to God and faith.
• Joseph Curl covered the White House and politics for a decade for The Washington Times. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org and on Twitter @josephcurl.