Yesterday, when I got the release from Jim DeMint about his request to Barack Obama for hearings on Afghanistan, my first thought had nothing to do with the substance of what DeMint was saying.
My first thought was, "Why’s he asking Obama that?"
And then it hit me: Obama is a United States senator. Not only that, he’s the chairman of a subcommittee on European affairs. I had momentarily forgotten the first fact, and I don’t think I ever even knew the second one.
Set aside for a moment the fact that it’s still a bit of a political stretch for DeMint to try to hold Obama, as European affairs chair, somehow accountable for some of our NATO allies not pulling their weight in Afghanistan — which, politically speaking, is what this challenge is about.
I’m still left marveling that it took me by surprise that someone was asking Obama to do some actual Senate work. We all have a bit of a tendency, don’t we, to think of Obama as this presidential candidate who’s more or less always (as far as we’re concerned) been a presidential candidate, rather than, say, a lawmaker.