The melancholy riff

   Democrats found out this past week that bad news, like deaths of famous people, tend to come in threes.
 First, former President Bill Clinton went off message by touting Mitt Romney’s Bain Capitol private sector experience, and then later in the week said that the Bush era tax cuts should be extended.
 Secondly, Republican Gov. Scott Walker survived a recall election in Wisconsin. In your face, Teamster Democrats.
 The third shoe to drop was the size 13.5 from President Obama.
 Call it his “Oops” moment. Or better still, his “The fundamentals of the economy are still strong” misstatement.
 At a press conference on Friday, Obama said “the private sector is doing fine.”
 As he should have, Mitt Romney pounced on that misstatement (if it had been Romney making the gaffe would it have been called a Mittstatement?)
 If Romney wasn’t so smug, so snarky and jubulant whenever bad economic news rears its ugly head, kowing the only way he’s going to get elected is if Americans continue to suffer, the election would be a lock for him.
 Romney is like the last girl left at the bar at 2 a.m. And you, no Harry Handsome yourself, end up taking her home. You know you’ll regret it in the morning, but what alternatives are left?
 Obama’s quote is a Christmas gift to the GOP in June. The president tried to walk back the numbskull statement later in the day, but the damage had already been done. Clearly, it was a dubious first place winner. The retraction was a distant second. And nobody remembers the also-ran.
 Obama is doing what a lot of political junkies thought would have been the impossible: he’s making Mitt Romney look good.
 Obama did get a bit of a break, however. The remark was made on Friday, when hardly anybody watches the news. Better still, it was probably overshadowed by a news story that more people cared about: the horse that won the Kentucky Derby and the Preakness and was going for the Triple Crown on Saturday at Belmont was scratched because it has a swollen tendon.
 The name of the horse is “I’ll Have Another.”
 That’s probably what Obama kept saying at the White House open bar well into the night after a rough week.
 What President Obama needs now is a song. He would be best served by a melancholy ballad like one by the great Frank Sinatra, who called himself as a saloon singer because he spoke through song for broken- hearted people who were drowing their sorrows.
 So, sung to one of Ol’ Blue Eyes greatest hits “One for the Road,” Barack Obama performing his melancholy riff:
“The hour is wee
 nobody’s awake in the White House, ‘cept you and me.
 So pour another one, Joe.
 I’ve been doing a lot of thinkin’
 I think you should know.
 We’re drinking ol’ running mate
 to a record not so great —-
 successes too few and far between.
 So make it one for the first lady
 and one more for Hillary 2016.

 “Joe, I’m sure you know it
 this election, we can still blow it.
 The jobs numbers are sinking us fast.
 But when you gaffe
 you still make me laugh.
 Four years goes by too fast.

  “Well, donors aren’t giving anymore.
  Joe, you  know we could lose
  to a flip-flopper with no core.
  Surrogates have loose lips,
  even liberals are jumping ship.
  We’ve got to turn it around
  more grassroots efforts on the ground,
  or come January we’ll be Cheney-mean.
  So make it one for the first lady
  and one more for Hillary 2016.”


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