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OpEdNews Op Eds    H2'ed 7/20/10

President Should Listen

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Message Brent Budowsky
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From The Hill.

Why is it wrong to call the Tea Party movement racist? Why is it important that President Obama name Elizabeth Warren to lead the consumer protection agency created in the financial bill? How can the Obama White House profit from the example of former Houston Mayor Bill White, the Democratic candidate for governor of Texas, and Rep. Chet Edwards (D-Texas)? Read on.

The 2010 election is about the revolt of the small people, to use an unfortunate term coined by the chairman of BP.

Who are the small people? Workers who cannot find jobs. Small-businessmen and -women who cannot get loans. Taxpayers who do not believe their money is well-spent. Seniors who worry about healthcare and receive no interest on their retirement savings. Veterans who do not receive the best medical care. People on the Gulf Coast suffering from the spill. The poor.

Many pundits ask why President Obama does not get political credit for major legislation.

The answer is simple: Most voters do not believe these massive bills will improve their lives. Voters are well-aware of the sausage factory of lobbying that gave birth to them. Voters do not believe self-praising spin from politicians.

Voters assume products of a system they believe is corrupt will be corrupted products, until the impact in their daily lives proves otherwise.

The oil-spill fiasco is an hourly reminder that words alone cannot be trusted.

There are some racists in the Tea Party movement. They should be deplored. However, most Tea Partiers are good people with legitimate grievances. It is politically inept and morally unfair to tar an entire movement with the sins of the few. It would be far better to fight for more jobs, in a fair economy, to unite all races behind shared interests.

If the president names Elizabeth Warren to head the consumer agency, he would electrify the Democratic base, appeal to small businesses and independents and validate the financial bill with action and results. Warren could begin with a multistate listening tour focusing on the needs of small business. If the president rejects the candidate who is clearly the most qualified, he would discredit the bill and the process.

The president and White House staff should follow events in Texas. White is making a strong run for governor talking common sense about jobs and education, receiving loud applause after plain-talk speeches to Texas veterans.

The latest campaign finance report shows White raised more money than incumbent Gov. Rick Perry (R) and has far more cash on hand.

Similarly, Edwards is fighting back hard and well against a Republican challenge and remains one of the leading voices for veterans in a generation.

Democrats can win in any state. Democrats who are spinning for surrender in any district should get out of the way of those who play to win.

Watching Democrats battle in the Lone Star State, I think Perry had it backward when he mused about Texas seceding from the union. Perhaps it would be better for the rest of the union toapply to join Texas, and get more of that spirit to succeed that Americans respect.
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Brent Budowsky is a regular columnist on He served as Legislative Assistant to U.S. Senator Lloyd Bentsen, responsible for commerce and intelligence matters, including one of the core drafters of the CIA Identities Law. Served (more...)

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