More from Taranto:
Obama has more he could say in response to the questions about ISIL he’s getting pummeled with since the Paris attacks. They’re just not, according to people familiar with his thinking, things that he wants to say out loud.
Things like, “Remember everyone panicking about how much surveillance we’re doing?” Or “How about all those people I’m killing with drones”? Those wouldn’t have quite the right ring for a president who’s come reluctantly, and with continuing reservations, to both. . . .
The president, according to people who know him, would rather not be Big Brother Obama or Kill List Obama, and he certainly doesn’t want to be seen that way.
That creates a tricky situation for the White House. Obama wants credit for his response to terrorism, but he doesn’t want to be attached to many of the ways he’s managed that response.
“Obama isn’t anxious to be known as the drone president,” said a Democratic strategist familiar with his thinking. “But to anyone who looks at the strikes they’ve taken and the raids that have been authorized, he clearly is fiercely going after these guys.”