President Barack Obama, after a lightning-quick start for his agenda on Capitol Hill, is bracing for a much slower pace and big changes in his proposals as early urgency and excitement give way to the more languid rhythms that are the norm for Congress.
...The officials said none of this is catching them by surprise: Obama knew Congress has limited bandwidth, and he simply wanted to get the wheels of government turning on every big issue this year. A big part of their communication strategy will now focus on highlighting incremental progress on the Obama agenda, to show people Washington is working again.
The White House’s handicapping for three centerpiece proposals: Financial-services reform has “a very good chance.” Health care “has a lot of momentum behind it.” And energy “got off to a great start” with the introduction last week of a model bill by House Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Henry A. Waxman (D-Calif.).
Translation: It's time to dial back expectations and put a happy face on the admin's inability to sweep away all opposition with a blinding wave of magical unicorn rainbow-farts.