|"Only dull people are brilliant at breakfast"
|"The liberal soul shall be made fat, and he that watereth, shall be watered also himself."
-- Proverbs 11:25
Mr. Obama had hoped to spend his summer creating jobs, passing financial reform, promoting his health care program, getting a Supreme Court justice confirmed and an arms control treaty with Russia ratified, pressing for international sanctions against Iran and jump-starting the troubled Middle East peace process. While not abandoning any of those goals, Mr. Obama now must find ways to continue pushing them while demonstrating to the nation that he is concentrating on a spill he has called “our highest priority.”
“This has hijacked his entire legislative agenda,” said Douglas Brinkley, a historian at Rice University who has written about Jimmy Carter, whose presidency was consumed by the Iran hostage crisis. “The White House felt they were on a roll. They were looking to be a new New Deal or new Great Society and they were just getting momentum going. Something this awful has sidetracked the agenda.”
Sara Taylor Fagen, White House political director under President George W. Bush, said the failure to contain the spill would make it hard for Mr. Obama to accomplish anything this year. “He’ll likely be managing the fallout for years to come,” she said. “Not until his re-election campaign will he have an opportunity to press reset.”