Newsweek's Clift Plays Democratic Strategist with 'What Obama Must Do After the Midterms'

Apparently the political death panel at Newsweek is resigned to the fact that the Democratic Congress is DOA come November 2.

Thus braced for the impact of a possible Republican congressional takeover, uber-liberal Newsweek writer Eleanor Clift donned her political strategist cap to openly advise Obama that how, "Just as Clinton did in ’94," he'll need to "reaffirm his relevance and return to his core principles."

But haven't Obama's core liberal principles been the problem that's brought about this impending midterm doom?

And while Clinton was no right-winger, it's indisputable that a Republican Congress helped push him to the center, which explains his final capitulation to welfare reform as well as his support of capital gains tax cuts. Does Clift really think Obama needs to double-down on liberal policies after a midterm thumping?

But why let those pesky details get in the way of an inspiring narrative hearkening Democrats back to the glory days of their last two-term president? The important thing for Clift is that Clinton  masterfully played public opinion to cruise to reelection and close out his tenure in office with high approval ratings, despite his personal and legal dirty laundry.

Of course, curiously absent from her October 8 piece was any examination of the role the media played in Clinton's successful political makeover post-1994.

Clinton and the Democrats found a handy whipping boy  in Newt Gingrich and the mainstream media were more than happy to be willing partners in vilifying the Republican House Speaker as a threat to America's senior citizens and children.

The media most certainly would attempt to play a similar role in the next two years, although Americans have wised up about the media's liberal bias, as recent polling data show:

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- For the fourth straight year, the majority of Americans say they have little or no trust in the mass media to report the news fully, accurately, and fairly. The 57% who now say this is a record high by one percentage point.

The 43% of Americans who, in Gallup's annual Governance poll, conducted Sept. 13-16, 2010, express a great deal or fair amount of trust ties the record low, and is far worse than three prior Gallup readings on this measure from the 1970s.

Nearly half of Americans (48%) say the media are too liberal, tying the high end of the narrow 44% to 48% range recorded over the past decade. One-third say the media are just about right while 15% say they are too conservative. Overall, perceptions of bias have remained quite steady over this tumultuous period of change for the media, marked by the growth of cable and Internet news sources. Americans' views now are in fact identical to those in 2004, despite the many changes in the industry since then.

Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd
Ken Shepherd is the Managing Editor for NewsBusters