Ezra opines on the scene:
This is, in other words, no time for moderation. And on the Mall today, you could believe it. The press was seated directly before the podium — I had a second-row seat to history, you might say — and behind us stretched the long lawn. And all we could do was gape. It was a sea of people. Millions of people. A mass of moving, yelling, dancing, joyous humanity, filling every patch of green and surrounding the Washington Monument. The image richly recalled the iconic photographs of Martin Luther King Jr.’s March on Washington. And the assembled politicians knew it. Up on the podium, you could see senators snapping pictures on their digital cameras, pointing at the crowd, shaking their heads in disbelief. They weren’t pretending to be blase about the scene. This was different. This was dramatic. It was a screaming, laughing, cheering rejoinder to those who would constrain the scale of Obama’s ambitions, or question his political assets.And, as somebody out there moving, yelling, dancing, and actively being humanity: I agree on all points. You’d think the members of both the “loyal” Democrats as well as both the vigorous/healthy and the lunatic, nothing-will-move opposition from the GOP side would look out and have exactly the same moment…and, upon hearing Obama’s own “the ground has shifted beneath them” line would combine the two streams of information and move out accordingly in the coming days and months. Instead, Jay Boehner gives us this:
I’m not sure that anyone knows exactly what [Obama] was trying to say.Indeed, the meaning of the various threads at work on the day were quite muddy. I guess we know what we have to look forward to.