Obama's lack of leadership is the problem

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The chaos that is consuming the Obama administration is a reflection of the president’s complete lack of leadership.

The fiscal cliff is a result of President Obama’s refusal to comply with the law set out in the Budget Act of 1974 that requires the president to submit a complete, all-encompassing budget to the Senate by February of each year. From there it goes to the House, is debated, modified, combined and then approved.

The budget presents the equivalent of a business plan for the fiscal year — it sets out how resources are to be allocated and how the president plans to lead.

President Obama has not prepared a budget worthy of serious consideration and the Senate has not passed a formal budget during the four years he has been in office. What Obama has essentially done is jot a couple of numbers on the back of an envelope and flipped it over to the Senate, which has voted against his nonsense.

Rather than leading the country with a specific plan, the president lurches from crisis to crisis and presides through brinksmanship. The lack of leadership resulted in the chaos surrounding the debate to raise the debt ceiling last year that eventually led to the downgrade of U.S. credit.

The lack of a blueprint for the current year has led to the current so-called fiscal cliff and the associated chaos, uncertainty and confusion. This would have been entirely avoidable had the president mapped out a coherent, comprehensive budget that specified spending and revenue, and anticipated potential economic events.

The president has a history of being non-committal — he voted “present” frequently as an Illinois state senator. In his latest book, “The Price of Politics,” Bob Woodward describes Obama as “... aloof, arrogant and in over his head.” His avoidance of a budget leaves him detached and above the fray, and the country leaderless.

The same chaos is now unfolding in the Benghazi and military arenas. The contradictions emanating from the White House, the Department of Defense, the State Department and the CIA reflect an administration completely out of control.

This is the ultimate absence of leadership. No one knows anything. No one is responsible for anything. Everyone is stating what they know to be untrue. Both the president and secretary of State will be out of the country as hearings commence. The congressional committees’ heads are spinning. And four people died — still with no explanation and little regret.

This is the president’s abysmal administration — chaos leading to calamity ending in collapse.

Roberta Wilson

Walla Walla

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