“Cliff debate illustrates Obama policies' true cost” (Our Views, Dec. 28) is misleading. Blaming the president for the stalemate over the “fiscal cliff” is like blaming New Zealand for global warming. If the country goes over the fiscal cliff, it's because Congress is trying to keep the president from simply following through on what he stated his policies were during the election. But policies don't get you elected; constituencies get you elected. He imposed provisions of the Dream Act and postponed the deportation of Latinos, repealed Don't Ask Don't Tell, supported marriage equality, expanded student loans and reduced their interest rates, enabled young people to stay on their parents' health insurance until age 26, guaranteed coverage for contraceptives and family planning — all policies popular among young people, women and Latinos.
It's always humorous to hear that the Obama presidency has been a dismal failure when his leadership is responsible of the largest expansion of the welfare state since Lyndon Johnson. Ruthless gerrymandering returned a Republican Congress that will try to vote down any revenue needed to set people to work building roads and schools, hiring hundreds of thousands of teachers and police, protecting major entitlements, passing immigration reform and keeping most parts of the Affordable Care Act that would provide millions with health insurance.
However difficult Obama's second term ends up being, his effective and responsive governance seems to have made him a champion to most Americans.
Greg Owings, Norman