Is it possible that many Americans will not warm to the idea of a candidate presuming to speak as an incumbent, and to do so to the world from Berlin?
I have read a few dozen reactions this morning, and find Scott Johnson’s the most nearly like mine:
In his sermon to the Germans, Barack Obama presents himself both as Barack the Baptist and the Obamessiah. Nevertheless, Americans naturally root for for the underdog to prevail. For pride to take a fall. Don’t we instinctively seek to puncture the grandiose pretensions of a blowhard? It seems to me that this is the question that Obama’s speech elicits.
And one more question. I wonder if Americans will appreciate Obama’s deprecation of the United States on foreign soil for his own self-aggrandizing purposes. Surely one does not need to be a conservative Republican to recoil from this display.
Many conservative analysts praised the speech, but opinion elites should check with the independent voters of the industrial midwest where this election will be decided. Their dads fought and won W.W.II and they may not find enough pride in American greatness in Obama’s speech.
Six weeks from now, the European trip will matter not at all in the settling of the vote –except that it deepens the conviction on the part of many that Obama really does believe that he is a uniquely gifted figure on the world stage. Given how very little he has acccomplished in his public life, this pride bordering on arrogance could become a story line in the fall.