Karl Rove sees warning signs for Obama in his dealings with Congress:
More significantly, Team Obama is stumbling on its biggest priority — an economic stimulus package. One stutter step came when Mr. Obama said he looked forward to signing a stimulus bill on Jan. 20 and then failed to lay out a proposal by mid-December so Congress could chew it over. That led House Appropriations Chairman David Obey to carp that “We’ve got to have some signals called by Obama . . . it’s hard to negotiate” when Team Obama “hasn’t decided what they want.”
Mr. Obama also tripped himself up by sending advisers to Capitol Hill on Dec. 18 to say that he wanted a stimulus bill to cost between $670 billion and $770 billion, but that he would accept $850 billion. This invited Congress to roll him and spend more. Now he may see not only his number shredded but the elements of his package as well.
Rove is making the same points I have attempted to make here over the last few weeks. The situations is not irretrievable for Obama, but he’s already given the liberal Congressional leadership too much latitude. His failure to engage, and send clear signals about what he will (or will not) accept will leave him responsible for the actions of Congress. That is a recipe for failure — especially since Congress has earned the high negative ratings that it’s getting ready to pass on to Obama.
Read the whole thing.