"OUR PRESIDENT": A PENCE DOG WHISTLE?
Maybe I'm reading way too much into this, but I'm struck by the way Representative Mike Pence answered a question about Rush Limbaugh's expressed desire to see Barack Obama fail. I'll explain below.
...[Limbaugh's] remarks have created a rather complicated and touchy political dynamic on the Hill, as the GOP tries to avoid a sour-puss, oppositionist label without offending its base. And on Wednesday, Rep. Mike Pence of Indiana tried to walk that tricky line.
Asked whether he shares Rush's hope that Obama will fail, Pence, the no. 3 ranked House Republican and a leader of congressional conservatives, demurred.
"Let me just say, every American hopes that our president is a success," said Pence. "But I agree strongly with Rush Limbaugh that on those issues that President Obama has committed himself to more government or more spending or a departure from traditional values, that I hope Republicans and other leaders around the country will be steady advocates for the American people.
"Everyone hopes that America succeeds and our president succeeds," Pence added, "but Republicans are going to stand for conservative values..."
Notice what he doesn't say?
He doesn't say he hopes President Obama succeeds. When he talks about what he thinks are problems, he uses Obama's name. When he expresses hope for success, he says our president.
Is it possible that he's trying to make the crazy base think he's not actually referring to Obama?
I might not ask if I didn't know that when you Google "obama not my president," you get millions and millions of hits.
At the very least, I think he just can't bring himself to utter any sentence that contains the words "want," "Obama," and "succeed" -- or he thinks he'd better not utter any such sentence if he wants to stay in the base voters' good graces.