How Obama Did It —and What We Now Know About Him

You can forget all those comparisons to Jimmy Carter
By Kevin Spak,  Newser Staff
Posted Mar 22, 2010 10:56 AM CDT
Barack Obama, and Joe Biden, embrace as they walk together after making a statement to the nation last night following the final vote for health care reform.   (AP Photo/Pablo Martinez Monsivais)
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(Newser) – Barack Obama earned a historic victory when the House passed health care reform last night. How did he do it and what does it mean? Here’s what people are saying:

  • “Obama didn't just work harder to clear this hurdle. He worked deeper,” writes John Dickerson of Slate. For the first time he made a cause personal, framing it in moral terms, and urging lawmakers to risk sacrificing their jobs to do the right thing.

  • He showed a newfound “combative stubbornness,” writes Peter Nicholas of the LA Times. Republicans thought this would be his “Waterloo,” but Obama proved “that a president who picks a goal, adopts a battle plan and sticks with it” is tough to beat.
  • The president basically schmoozed his way to victory, says Jennifer Bendery on Roll Call. Through one-on-one talks and social events, he flipped even tough votes like Dennis Kucinich.
  • Republicans have delighted in calling Obama ineffective or incompetent, but that’s all over, writes Jonathan Chait of The New Republic; Obama has sealed his place in history. “He will never be plausibly compared with Jimmy Carter.”

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