Economy Sputters, Obama Grabs His Putter
The next time President Obama hits the links, it will be his 100th round of golf since coming to the White House. That’s quite a milestone in just 3 1/2 years. As it takes him about six hours to drive to the greens and complete 18 holes, Mr. Obama has spent the equivalent of four months’ worth of work time golfing. Meanwhile, the U.S. economy has been stuck in a sand trap.
Before Mr. Obama teed off for the first time as president, he delivered a State of the Union address that promised his new stimulus bill would “save or create 3.5 million jobs.” At that time, February 2009, unemployment was 8.3 percent and the debt was $10.8 trillion. He kicked off the golf streak on April 26, 2009, and he played a total of 27 rounds in his first year.
"One of the interesting things about this is that as you cite these statistics that say the economy is improving, you almost do political damage to yourself. If you stand up and claim great progress you’re only frustrating this alienated middle class more," Axelrod said.
The moderator, John Callaway, noted that Ronald Reagan had been able to talk up the economy in 1984, while George H. W. Bush had been unable to in 1992.
"Bush tastelessly did it often from the ninth hole and from the cigar boat and other places. And the impression you got was that he was out of touch," Axelrod said.