Can He Pull It Off?


Cohn compares the State Of The Union to Obama's speech on race during the campaign:

The easy approach to that controversy--the one, I’m sure, most political consultants would have advised--would have been a simple and apologetic disavowal of Wright. Instead, Obama seized the opportunity to offer a disquisition on American attitudes about race, in all of its mind-numbing complexity. 

Somehow, the gambit worked. People paid attention. They respected Obama for it. And his candidacy survived.

My gut tells me that this State of the Union cries for the same approach--that people will respect and embrace Obama if, rather than backing down, his reaffirms his commitment to the ideals on which he ran. They want to know he’s listening, but they also want him to keep fighting. They can handle the complicated message--in fact, they want it.

My feelings entirely. I'll be live-blogging of course.

(Photo: Emmanuel Dunand/Getty, during the campaign.)