You probably heard about the three Secret Service agents who were sent home from The Netherlands for their drunken exploits. What you probably have not heard is anyone try to suggest that those drunken exploits somehow say something about President Obama’s competence.
But that’s where Chris “The Fix” Cillizza comes in. The Washington Post’s resident arbiter of political narratives thinks the latest bit of Secret Service debauchery, coupled with the latest Obamacare enrollment extension, will leave voters even leerier of the current president.
“At first glance, these two events have little in common with one another. But, modern politics is all about narratives and storylines,” Cillizza wrote Wednesday. “And, both of these events confirm a growing concern from the public about President Obama: That he’s just not up to governing his administration and, by extension, the country, effectively.”
Sure, the enrollment extension alone probably spawned enough negative headlines to create at least some political damage for Obama. But the notion that the Secret Service misbehavior somehow weakens the president’s standing seems a stretch.
A scan of conservative outlets found that Obama’s adversaries in the media haven’t exploited it that way. Republican lawmakers haven’t used the story to bash the administration. And none of the press coverage of the dismissed agents has focused on Obama’s competence.
What exactly does Cillizza see that the rest of us don’t?