The vote President Obama is now asking to delay, is the vote he previously requested which would have doomed his 2nd term to irrelevance – It was certain to fail.
From an Obama position of brutally obvious weakness, Russia’s Putin twists President Obama and spins him like a top. President Obama is going to speak to the nation tonight at 9:00pm.
The core of how this is taking place is discussed, and what’s potentially at the root of the collapsing messaging, after two media reports:
FIRST FROM DC – President Barack Obama said Tuesday he wants Congress to delay its efforts to vote on authorizing the use of force in response to Syria’s use of chemical weapons until the round of diplomatic efforts that began this week has a chance to play out.
Obama’s comments came at lunch meetings with senators, which followed the administration’s commitment to engage in talks at the United Nations, and as Syria and Russia quickly responded to the action at the UN with their own statements and requests.
“We’re going to continue to work moving forward on this but keeping pronounced — and I pronounce it now — that the credible threat of our doing something about this attack is going to remain,” Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) said after the president’s 75-minute meeting with Senate Democrats. Senate Majority Whip Richard Durbin (D-Ill.) added that a Senate vote on the use of force would be delayed until next week, at the earliest.
Efforts to reach an agreement at the UN began Tuesday, as France proposed a Security Council resolution that Russia quickly dismissed as “unacceptable,” before Russian President Vladimir Putin called on Obama to renounce the use of force. (read more)
SECOND FROM RUSSIA – Russian President Vladimir Putin said that Syria’s chemical arms handover will only work if the US and its allies renounce the use of force against Damascus.
“Certainly, this is all reasonable, it will function and will work out, only if the US and those who support it on this issue pledge to renounce the use of force, because it is difficult to make any country – Syria or any other country in the world – to unilaterally disarm if there is military action against it under consideration,” President Putin said on Tuesday.
Putin said the disarmament of Syria’s chemical weapons had been extensively discussed by experts and politicians.
The Russian president said that he and President Barack Obama had “indeed discussed” such a possibility on the sidelines of the G20 summit in St. Petersburg last week.
It was agreed, Putin said, “to instruct Secretary of State [John Kerry] and Foreign Minister [Sergey Lavrov] to get in touch” and “try to move this idea forward.”
President Putin’s comments came shortly after the Syrian government said it would agree to place its chemical weapons arsenal under international control. (read more)
Vladimir Putin is laying out Obama’s weakness on a national stage. Putin playing Chess, Obama jumping Checkers.
President Obama’s jumps all over the global board regarding Syria are showcasing a White House that is weak on direct messaging, and insufferably devoid of foreign policy direction. This is not argued. Well, at least, not argued by the intellectually honest observers. But the bigger question is why?
Why is President Obama caught in seemingly inescapable alternatives, each step making the picture even more muddied than the last? What’s structurally changed amid his keepers, minders, handlers and policy advisors? The answer to that question is easier to understand.
With the academic Samantha Power, the architect of the Libyan fiasco, dispatched to the U.N. you can see the difference between intellectual theory analysis and real life consequential action.
But the real struggle is from his “fixer” seemingly overwhelmed.
Denis McDonough is, or perhaps better said, was, Obama’s fixer. We outlined his prior deflective successes with Fast and Furious and Benghazi. This led to a promotion of sorts for McDonough to become Obama’s Chief of Staff, but it diminished Denis’s capacity to focus on the protectionary expertise for his boss.
McDonough’s desk is now filled with all POTUS issues.
He now deals with the weeds, and he no longer has the ability to focus exclusively on strategy presentations which are his forte. McDonough is very skilled at Teflon protecting Obama, he is unable to deliver that level of protectionary advisement while caught in the day-to-day responsibilities of a COS.
If you look back to when the wheels became wobbly, you’ll note the change in position.
It was no mistake when POTUS took that 45 minute Rose Garden walk with McDonough which led to the 180′ turn in his Syrian objective and the engagement of congress. Denis knew the risk of the ‘go-it-alone’ roadmap being followed, and seeing David Cameron go down in flames in U.K Parliament he quickly recognized what was about to happen.
McDonough’s advice has been pretty good, darned good, for the prior 6 years. As mentioned he has protected Obama from some really damaging issues, POTUS values such loyalty and success.
The Congressional vote was the McDonough “out”, until it wasn’t and it became obvious they -through the vote- would fail; but it bought them time.
After Kerry gaffed, and Putin took his last Bishop, McDonough tried to get out of “check” with the diplomatic option moving one square left of congress….. but the box will close tightly in only three moves if he is not careful.
If POTUS can find his way out of this, it will only be with the focus of McDonough in applying the layers of needed Teflon upon a board of rapidly diminishing strengths.
Without McDonough’s laser focus on his six, Obama is doomed.