Obama setting scene for re-election by moving to the center

Say what you like about Barack Obama, but never underestimate him.

Just when the pundits were writing him off after the mid term debacle, he comes back with a fourth and long touchdown and passes major legislation.

Getting the Bush tax cuts bill through the House and Senate, passing 'Don't Ask Don't Tell' repeal and pushing hard on other legislative priorities rewrites the book on Obama.

Instead of disengaged liberal we may need to call him Mr. in the Middle.

His ability to pass legislation has never been doubted -- he passed the greatest reform of health care since Medicare.

However, post election, he was widely written off as unable to work with Republicans because he was too far to the left.

He has quickly scuppered that Washington truth.

Opinion polls in the next few weeks will show his popularity returning in my opinion.

Americans desperately want politicians to work together and to pass legislation that helps them in these troubled times.

Obama has now proven he can work with Republicans to make that happen.

It is far more difficult in this era of prying cameras and 24 hour news coverage to pass legislation.

In the old days, the smoke filled rooms and old boy network sufficed.

Now you have to worry every moment about leaks or finding the Tea Party, The New York Times or Fox News on your tail.

Obama may well be the leader who turns all that to his advantage.

He has shown an extraordinary sense of coolness and detachment and rarely if ever appears to be hot and bothered by the latest controversy.

It allows him to make his move to the center with far less rancor than might have been the case if he had been using the bully pulpit to hammer Republicans.

2012 re-election anyone?