Hard-right columnists like Charles Krauthammer and William Kristol were left looking like they represented an old, irrelevant wing of the Republican Party after all their bluster against the potential of Barack Obama last year. So why is the president-elect bothering to have dinner with them at the house of fellow right-wing writer George Will? And should progressives be mad about it? Well, Markos Moulitsas doesn't think so, and neither does Michael Crowley. Michael Wolff even thinks it's a good idea, because it creates a helpful (yet effectively meaningless) image of camaraderie:
undoubtedly with design, he picked this special, print-centric, lap-dog group of conservatives with which to start his rapprochement, guys so out of touch with the current Republicanism as to make them almost irrelevant. The Obama message is a crafty one: He’s choosing these fretting, parsing, neurotic, limp-wristed, desperate-to-be-liked print guys, over the crass, spitting, scary, voluble guys on television and radio, the Ailes-Rove-Limbaugh wing of the Republican Party.
But does this, on top of pandering to the right with the business-tax cuts in his stimulus package and meeting with them later this week to negotiate his case, seem like too much? What do you think: Is he going to disappoint progressives by trying to reach across the aisle while he still has the power not to bother?
Obama Dines With Conservative Columnists [Caucus/NYT]