The honeymoon is over. Barack Obama doesn't bring me flowers anymore. "You don't mind taking a cab home from the airport, do you, honey?'' he asked the last time I boarded a late-night flight.
It's not just I me who sees the bloom coming off the Rose Garden. A handful of polls this week show the president's popularity slipping. Voters are increasingly concerned that health care reform will leave them worse off, that the economic stimulus plan isn't working, and that the administration is trying to
do to much at once.
Yes, Obama is proving to be what many of us knew all along: He's a mere mortal, unable to leap two wars, a recession and the conflict in the Middle East in a single bound. The soaring rhetoric of hope and change gives way to dull press conferences about a "health insurance exchange.'' The smoothest of operators, Obama even speaks from the heart instead of the head now and then, as he did when he said the Cambridge police "stupidly'' arrested a black Harvard professor for disorderly conduct in his own home.
In Florida and elsewhere, the shaken confidence in Obama is coming from the left and the right. Keep reading here.