DC Happy, Wall Street Not So Much

It’s ebullient here. Was just walking through Georgetown which is crowded with happy revelers but if you’ve looked at the markets you know the Dow is off about 4 percent at 3:30 and even if it were to recover, it’s shows how much deep despair there is about the banking system despite the cappucino, Red Bull and amphetamines that have been applied to the system. A few weeks ago, Bank of America, with its takeover of Merrill Lynch looked like one of the few stable survivors, along with JP Morgan Chase, of this era. Now the Charlotte-based behemoth is in free fall, down nearly 25 percent this afternoon.

All of this strengthens Obama’s already very strong hand with Congress. From the western steps of the Capitol, the 535 members saw the power of that crowd spread across the mall. Churlish Republicans may be able to dis Obama, but it’s hard to think of any Democrat who is going to screw with him at this point. Power waxes and wanes but the combination of DC-based adulation and Wall Street woes, gives Obama an incredible boost going into his first day at the office.