Should progressives be disappointed with the first two years of Obama's presidency? "It takes more than one election cycle to change the order of things," argued The Nation's Katrina vanden Heuvel today on MSNBC's Morning Joe. "I think progressives need to be as pragmatic, clear-eyed, tough about our President Obama as he is about us."
The problem, says host Joe Scarborough, is that the president can't govern as a progressive because he ran as a moderate: "It's so much easier to run as a conservative Republican for president, and if you look back, conservative candidates win. Moderate Republicans don't win. But if you're a Democrat, you have to run as a moderate." But for vanden Heuvel, the anger surrounding the banks bailout, Wall Street's fecklessness and threats to social security make the moment ripe for across-the-aisle political relationships: "In this country today, you could craft some true transpartisan coalitions and run...without any of the labels you just applied."