New York magazine columnist Frank Rich lashed out at the Obama administration for its handling of President Obama's upcoming speech to Congress during an appearance on "Piers Morgan Tonight" on Thursday. He also said that Obama's tenure has been a "rhetorical and...substantive failure."
Rich said that the White House had committed blunders every step of the way, first by requesting the speech on the same night as the GOP debate and then by agreeing to move the date.
"I think it's amateur night," he said. "You'd think that the White House would have figured out this debate was going on, you know. It's not being held on a public access channel...it really makes you wonder who is in charge."
Morgan said Obama had come off looking "weak." Rich agreed, and said that Obama had also ramped up the pressure on himself by making such a big deal out of the timing of the speech. (Of course, Friday's jobs report put a whole new load of pressure on Obama.)
"That speech really better be dynamite," he said. "Because after all this buildup and nonsense and farce, if he, you know, delivers a mouse, particularly for you think of all the Americans who are suffering from unemployment, he's got a bigger problem than he started with."
Rich continued that it was time for Obama to "step up to the plate" and challenge Republicans "directly" on their economic policies, lest the speech be "another wasted opportunity" for him.
In another segment, Rich was even more damning. "This has been a very scattered administration," he said. "I don't know what the problem has been. But it's really been a rhetorical and in some ways a substantive failure."
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