The inaugural parties are over and our collective hangovers are exacerbated by the reality that America has a lot of work to do. Over the coming 100 days, the MSM will hang on our new president's every action, while politicos and activists will watch to see if the bipartisan promise of hope can come to fruition. It will be easy to fall victim to histrionics and unrealistic expectations. That's why we have decided to blog The Real 100 Days on both of our sites, www.maegancarberry.com and www.medializzy.com, which we'll also be posting here at HuffPo. We'll be deconstructing the media's coverage of Obama's new administration and holding our commander-in-chief accountable to his promise to find ways to work across party lines.
His first day was a bit of a freebie, although he does get stellar marks for his dance moves and we both cried when Beyonce sang 'At Last.' For many Americans, with thanks to the MSM, we shared an almost private moment between husband and wife as the Etta James classic rang out first at the Neighborhood Ball, where they were introduced by Denzel Washington. Our President and First Lady made their debut in a uniquely poignant way - bridging the distance between generations, allowing symbolism to stand on its own historic weight.
Across the MSM coverage, there were moments of brilliance and moments unfit for broadcast. No one bats 1000 every season. Unfortunately, some commentators drew inferences from Obama's Inaugural address that simply were not there. In some instances they seemed eager to find an ungracious statement. Having listened to the speech live, and re-read the text, watched the speech again and again - not once in the 18 minute address could President Obama be defined as lacking humility. In fact, he went out of his way to thank former President Bush for his service to our nation.
Sadly, many of President Obama's most ardent followers remain incapable of mirroring his grace. As former President Bush took the stage, "Arrest Bush" signs went up and dozens of folks began chanting "nah, nah, nah, nah, hey hey hey, good-bye." Such behavior was rewarded by few in the MSM, just as it was being exploited by some in conservative-leaning media as proof of Mr. Obama's perceived liberalism. Both are wrong. While unnecessary, the behavior reflects only on those displaying it.
President Obama laid out clear objectives, a sober agenda, and has reached out across the aisle. White House Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel is reportedly in near-daily contact with Republican Whip Eric Cantor in the US House. With the economic stimulus package, Obama needs a broad bi-partisan coalition. He may get there with the assistance of the next generation in the GOP Ranks, like Cantor, who ultimately want what is best for the nation, not what pleases an artificial or temporary political need.
Throughout his first 100 days, President Obama will likely deploy a charm offensive. Already, he is winning over Republicans impressed by his public statements on Israel. On the White House website, a sturdy support for Israel is enumerated. Keeping General David Petraeus and Defense Secretary Gates, along with his very crisp salute to the troops has eased concerns and opened a communications channel between the President and the loyal opposition that may evolve into a bond where national security is no longer a political football but, instead an issue of common concern. Now that is presidential leadership.
We'll be back tomorrow with thoughts on Guantanamo, alleged wire-tapping, the debut of the State Dept, Robert Gibb's first press conference and more. We welcome your comments and observations here and on our blogs. If you tweet, use the hashtag #100days.