The A Team
On any given Sunday, a presidential administration usually sends out a mixture of staff and other surrogates to serve as guests on the morning political talk shows – often you will get a cabinet secretary or policy czar, maybe a political advisor or friendly Member of Congress. But yesterday we were treated to a televised full-court press by the Obama Administration’s political “A Team” – Chief of Staff Rahm Emanuel, and close Obama advisors, David Axelrod and Valerie Jarrett – as they fanned out across the networks and cable news outlets.
For me, this is a sure sign that the fall political season has officially arrived. Whenever a president goes to his in-house political team like this, whether it's Obama’s Chicago trio or George W. Bush’s Texas two-step of Karl Rove and Karen Hughes, it usually means that political strategy (or damage control) has been set – in this case, on issues like health care, Afghanistan, and regulation of the financial markets – and the White House is out to shape public opinion in a way that drives specific legislative outcomes. This task is not something the White House typically leaves up to its cabinet secretaries or policy czars. It means that the Obama Administration is finally looking for movement in one or more of these areas.

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