A Cliffhanger In The White House
washingtonpost.com — President Obama hosted a screening of Steven Spielberg’s “Lincoln” at the White House the other day. He should do it again — and again and again. For the subsequent showings, though, the president ought to invite every member of Congress. Have them settle into the plush red seats of the White House theater and mull the possibilities, for landmark greatness or epic failure, available to a second-term president and lame-duck Congress. “Lincoln” is exquisitely crafted and even more exquisitely timed. Focused on President Abraham Lincoln’s battle to win House passage of the 13th Amendment, it presents useful lessons in the subtle arts of presidential leadership and the practice of politics, at once grimy and sublime. Dealing with the fast-approaching “fiscal cliff” is not a national crisis on the order of abolishing slavery. The country is limping out of a recession, not embroiled in a bloody civil war.