In the Bully Pulpit: “It’s the right thing to do.”

In his recent State of the Union address, President Obama urged the Congress to take action on paid sick leave for American workers. Forty-three million workers currently have no paid sick leave, the President noted, forcing many to make “the gut-wrenching choice between a paycheck and a sick kid at home.” Rectify this situation, he told the lawmakers: “It’s the right thing to do.”

“It’s the right thing to do.” This is a familiar refrain by now, six years into Obama’s presidency. If not paid sick leave, it’s health care reform, or the Dream Act, or tax credits for clean energy, or tuition assistance or gay rights. On these and many more issues, the President has again and again used his bully pulpit to justify his policy positions on moral grounds.

He could have done otherwise. He could have justified many of these positions on purely practical grounds, emphasizing the economic benefits of health care reform or immigration reform. And he has made those practical appeals. But in the end, for this President, the most compelling argument is always the moral one: “It’s the right thing to do.”

Is this a good strategy for winning the hearts and minds of the American people? —> Read More Here


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