Presidents don’t become presidential when they’re inaugurated, writes Peggy Noonan in the Wall Street Journal. “Every president has a moment when suddenly he becomes what he meant to be.” For Barack Obama, that moment came during his speech on Tuesday. “He put on the cloak,” writes Noonan. Whether or not his proposals work, Americans know that someone is in charge.
Working in Obama’s favor is his decisive election victory, unlike those of his two most recent predecessors. The American people consciously chose him, and they are hoping for greatness, writes Noonan. “The last unalloyed, inarguable success was Reagan. We need another. Liberal? Conservative? That, to the great middle of America, would, at the moment, be secondary. They want successful.”