Glenn, in a piece I otherwise agree with, updates with this:
One related point about the spate of “Obama-should-have-followed-Rahm’s-centrist-advice” articles that have appeared of late: if you really think about it, it’s quite extraordinary to watch a Chief of Staff openly undermine the President by spawning numerous stories claiming that the President is failing because he’s been repeatedly rejecting his Chief of Staff’s advice. It seems to me there’s one of two possible explanations for this episode: (1) Rahm wants to protect his reputation at Obama’s expense by making clear he’s been opposed all along to Obama’s decisions, a treacherous act that ought to infuriate Obama to the point of firing him; or (2) these stories are being disseminated with Obama’s consent as a means of apologizing to official Washington for not having been centrist enough and vowing to be even more centrist in the future by listening more to Rahm (we know that what we did wrong was not listen enough to Rahm). One can only speculate about which it is, but if I had to bet, my money would be on (2) (because of things like this and because these “Rahm-Was-Right” stories went on for weeks and Rahm is still very much around).
I think you’d have to be nuts to think Rahm is behind the recent “Rahm was right” stories. It may be “friends” of Rahm who think they are doing Rahm a favor, or it may be folks in Washington playing their own political games, but no Chief of Staff in their right mind would be behind stories like this. Rahm may be a lot of things, but he is not a blithering idiot, and I’d bet anything he hates these stories as much as Obama.
The second point, that Obama is not only ok with these stories but furthermore is “apologizing” to Washington is as crazy and conspiratorial as I’ve ever seen. It makes, quite honestly, no sense. Obama is ok with spreading stories that appear to have his Chief of Staff undercutting him?
Glenn consistently mocks the 11-dimensional chess when Obama’s defenders use it deflect blame when the Obama team has made mistakes. It’s absurd to then suggest that the Obama team is now deploying 11 dimensional chess with the media in order to apologize to centrist Washington. It particularly makes no sense when you consider Obama has become far more aggressive in the past few weeks (up or down vote, the line drawn at the HCR summit).
More than likely, I’d bet these stories are coming from Rahm’s buddies who think they are doing him a favor.