You’d think our president would have learned his lesson about sensitive discussions with other world leaders in close proximity to live microphones. Evidently not. This exchange with Medvedev reminds me of the “Etch-A-Sketch” comments from Mitt Romney’s advisor last week, in that both were self-inflicted wounds that inadvertently reinforced concerns articulated by each man’s detractors. This mistake is worse because the words came from the president’s own lips and dealt with a very specific and sensitive national security question. Just as Obama’s SuperPAC was quick to use Eric Fehrnstrom’s words against his boss, Romney has already seized on the president’s whispered remarks to advance a potent line of attack:
@Mitt Romney: Fill in the blank. @BarackObama: I’ll have more flexibility to _______ after the election. #ObamaFlexibility
Most Americans already believe Obama’s worldview is slanted too far to the left, and frown upon several of his major “accomplishments” in office. Here we have Obama quietly assuring a borderline-hostile, possibly illegitimate regime that he’ll enjoy increased flexibility to play ball with them against American interests after he’s been liberated from the yoke of voter accountability. Romney’s tweet drives at the heart of the logical follow-up question: What else would President Obama attempt to pull off after washing his hands of the irritating business of democracy?