Obama: I have it tougher than Abe Lincoln

In June of this year, Obama complained that he was “left at the altar” when GOP negotiators rejected his tax-boosting “Grand Bargain” debt ceiling deal. Congress subsequently negotiated a deficit reduction plan that left Obama on the sidelines.

“He’s put himself in a cocoon,” said Ryan Rhodes, a Iowa tea party activist who challenged Obama publicly on Monday. “A lot of his supporters are more sensitive … They seem to think any questioning of the president is racist,” he told TheDC.

In recent weeks, says Foner, even Democratic partisans have begun criticizing Obama’s apparent unwillingness to hear critics: “Obama has dismissed liberal and left-wing criticism … He acts as if they have no place to go and he doesn’t have to listen to them.”

Obama’s self-comparison with Abraham Lincoln came during the second stop of his three-day taxpayer-funded tour through Minnesota, Iowa and Illinois.

Obama told another questioner that politicians should avoid invective. “Since I’ve been called a socialist who wasn’t born in this country, who is destroying America and taking away its freedoms because I passed a health care bill, I’m all for lowering the rhetoric,” he said.