Photo: Julia La Roche for Business Insider
Until today, Obama didn’t have much to say about Occupy Wall Street. But at his press conference today, all of that changed when a reporter asked him what the thought about the protests.Obama said:
“I think people are frustrated. And, you know, the — the protesters are giving voice to a more broad based frustration about how our financial system works.”
It wasn’t a total vote of support, but it was certainly a show of sympathy for the cause. And he should have sympathy. Obama’s pushing more regulation of Wall Street, and so are many of the protesters. The DNC is even trying to ride on that sentiment in a campaign commercial.
But what do the protesters think of him as leader?
Sure there are the super left-wing signs comparing the entire U.S. government to Nazis and capitalism to slavery, but what’s the consensus?
When we asked Occupy Wall Streeters, we realised that it was a complicated relationship. But here’s the gist. President Obama didn’t fail us. We failed President Obama.
When Republicans want to say the people support their policies, they have a vocal, active Tea Party to point to and say, “see, the American people want this.”
Obama has no one. Many protesters want to give him someone — a lot of someones — to point to and say, “see the American people want regulation, they want reform.”
They may not become a political party, but protesters certainly are vocal, and they know how to rally support. Perhaps, at least for the President, that’s all they need to do.