Karl Rove offered an interesting postmortem

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from USAToday,

Karl Rove offered an interesting postmortem Thursday of what happened to Republicans in their battle with the White House over the government shutdown and debt ceiling.

Rove, the former George W. Bush political strategist and organizer of the political action committee American Crossroads, writes in the Wall Street Journal that Republican lawmakers walked into a trap set by President Obama.

Here’s a bit of what Rove had to say:

There’s plenty of blame to go around for the chaos in Washington, but at the top of the list is the absence of presidential leadership. When Congress is close to agreement but still divided, the country rightly counts on its chief executive to bridge the gaps, make the compromises, and smooth the way to passage.

“Instead, President Obama deliberately withdrew from negotiations over the debt ceiling and government shutdown. According to a Bloomberg report on Wednesday, the White House was concerned his personal involvement would be ‘a mistake that damaged the president’s ability to advance his agenda.’

“Perhaps it was for the best. Mr. Obama’s skill is not in bringing Americans together; it is turning them against one another. This latest crisis over the debt ceiling and shutdown is a case in point. Having voted against an increase in the debt ceiling in 2006 as the junior senator from Illinois, the president now characterizes those opposed to one today as reckless and crazed. Hypocrisy makes for clever politics but bad governing.

Rove concludes:

Barack Obama set the trap. Some congressional Republicans walked into it. As a result, the president is stronger, the GOP is weaker, and ObamaCare is marginally more popular.

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