The AP's White House correspondent, surely at the suggestion of the group she is supposed to be covering objectively, writes that President Barack Obama's forays into unilateral executive action have been good for his soul. The President's authoritarian moves have apparently also been "cathartic" for the White House staff, now reportedly "buoyed by a new sense of purpose." Isn't that sweet? Excerpts from this piece of journalistic junk follow the jump (bolds are mine):
Going it alone gives Obama new sense of purpose
This week, President Barack Obama promoted tougher fuel efficiency standards for trucks. He touted progress on initiatives to strengthen the U.S. patent system. And he signed an executive order intended to speed up the process for approving import or export cargo.
Welcome to Obama's self-proclaimed "year of action," where hardly a day goes by without the president and his top advisers trumpeting policy initiatives the White House is undertaking without the help of Congress.
The mostly modest actions - far shy of the sweeping immigration overhaul Obama hoped for this year - put into sharp focus the president's limitations as he grapples with reluctant lawmakers in an election year. They also underscore how much has changed for Obama since the early days of his presidency, when he declared, "We do big things."
Yet the flurry of executive actions does seem to be having a cathartic effect inside the White House, which was in need of a jolt after a frustrating and disjointed 2013 that included the flawed rollout of Obama's signature health care law and a sharp drop in the president's approval ratings. Advisers who ended the year dispirited now appear buoyed by a new sense of purpose - and the prospect of working around a Congress that has long been an irritant to the president.
The actions are collectively far from modest, and are unprecedented, especially when factoring in (at last count) the 27 arbitrary changes to and delays in implementing what was once known as the "Affordable Care Act," which for all practical purposes no longer exists. What we have must be called "Obamacare," because the rules for the nation's state-run health insurance scheme are apparently whatever Barack Obama and Kathleen Sebelius say they are.
But Julie Pace tells us that the apparatchiks are happy, so I guess we're supposed to be happy.
Signaling how little the White House expects to change on Capitol Hill this year, Obama communications director Jennifer Palmieri said advisers are already mapping out plans for executive actions that will be unveiled well into the fall and winter. That process, she said, "has ignited a lot of creative thinking around here."
... In the absence of legislative action, the White House is pumping out a constant stream of executive actions on issues touching the economy, education and climate change. Some are relatively modest or simply prod along plans that were already in motion.
Great, the White House staffers are in maximum "creative" brainstorming mode. Something tells me they're not pursuing deregulation initiatives. We are so ... in trouble.
It will surprise absolutely no one that the word "constitution" is absent from Pace's pathetic PR piece.
By the way, this is the same Julie Pace who in November reveled over not reporting Obama administration negotiations with Iran for a full eight months until the White House said it was okay to do so. The AP tried to pretend that it hadn't complied with any White House requests, a claim which was proven false when a member of another news organization indicated that both it and AP "were asked not to publish" until after the talks ended.
Cross-posted at BizzyBlog.com.