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Commentary: Obama a leader who actually leads

  • Story Highlights
  • Jack Cafferty: It's refreshing to have a president who is a leader
  • Cafferty: Obama is working hard to solve the nation's problems
  • Cafferty: Still, Obama has slipped up on spending bill and on some appointments
  • Cafferty: Not all of Obama's ideas will work, but some of them will
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By Jack Cafferty
CNN
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Editor's note: Jack Cafferty is the author of a new book, "Now or Never: Getting Down to the Business of Saving Our American Dream." He provides commentary on CNN's "The Situation Room" daily from 4 to 7 p.m. ET. You can also visit Jack's Cafferty File blog.

Jack Cafferty says Obama is getting things done even though he's made some mistakes.

Jack Cafferty says Obama is getting things done even though he's made some mistakes.

NEW YORK (CNN) -- What a welcome change to feel like someone is running the country instead of running it into the ground.

President Obama has done more in eight weeks than George W. Bush did in eight years -- unless you include starting a couple of wars.

While the armchair quarterbacks second guess the new president, he gets up every day and does things, lots of things.

Whether it's creating commissions for women and girls, ordering the investigation of President Bush's use of signing statements, or jamming a huge stimulus package through Congress, the man is working his tail off. And he seems to be loving every minute of it. It's almost as though our president was born to do exactly what he's doing. He's leading, and boy, is that refreshing.

I remember many times when Bush was in office wondering who the hell was running the country. Then he would appear somewhere in front of a handpicked audience to utter some banalities or say something utterly stupid and I would be reminded. I don't miss him.

That's not to say President Obama hasn't stubbed his toe here and there. Signing that omnibus spending bill with all those earmarks in it after campaigning so hard against pork was probably a mistake. The opportunity was right there to send that bill back to Congress with a note that read, "I told you I am against earmarks and I meant it. Now do it over and send me something clean." Nancy Pelosi's head would have probably exploded, but the American people would have been ready to crown him king.

There are serious questions about whether Tim Geithner has what it takes to solve the banking crisis. Either nationalize the big ones in trouble or let them fail. It doesn't seem that just continuing to hand them money is working.

Better background checks on some of his appointees would have saved him some embarrassment. There's no excuse for asking someone like Tom Daschle with his problems to do anything.

But the point, I guess, is this: President Obama is attacking our country's problems on several fronts. He's got ambitious ideas on how to solve them, and he communicates a sense of calm and confidence to the rest of us as he goes about his business. Will all his ideas work? Of course not. But if you throw enough stuff at the wall, some of it will stick.

And at least I don't go to bed at night worried that I'll wake up in the morning to find out we're about to invade someone.

The opinions expressed in this commentary are solely those of Jack Cafferty.

All About Barack ObamaTimothy GeithnerNancy Pelosi

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