Is it just me or are more people surprised by the snowballing impact of Obama’s re-election?
It’s not just the return to Clinton tax rates for the very wealthy; it’s a real cultural shift as well. In the last week, we have seen the Boy Scouts back off a national policy of excluding openly gay scouts and scout-masters (which means the Mormon hierarchy must have not made too big a fuss);we have Tom Tancredo almost smoking a joint in public (don’t make a bet with him on anything in the future); we have Sean Hannity’s ratings plummeting; we see gay couples included in the president’s comprehensive immigration reform; we have Limbaugh edging ever-so-slightly toward Rubio on immigration; and we have this somewhat astounding “favorable/unfavorable” chart for the president:
The ABC/Post poll has him at 60 percent favorable. Meanwhile, a plurality of Texans want an assault weapons ban. The ban on women in combat has been lifted, with little fuss. And here’s the latest poll of polls on Obamacare:
That’s the narrowest gap since 2009. A majority of Americans, moreover, now favor a path to citizenship for illegal immigrants – and a plurality of Republicans also agree. The forces against marriage equality are struggling to stay financially afloat; the NRA and AIPAC, two of the most toxic lobbies in Washington, have been off their game after the Newtown massacre and the Hagel nomination.
I’m sure the usual backlash is coming. I’m just as sure that honeymoons don’t last. But this doesn’t feel like a honeymoon; it seems to me that the size and composition of the electorate last November has shifted the mood and direction of the country – durably. The GOP now has to grapple with reality; and the president has to avoid any hint of hubris if he is to cement what is increasingly a lasting legacy.