Another commencement, another opportunity for President Barack Obama to urge the nation's graduates to participate fully in the political process. He cannot say it often enough, especially during a presidential campaign when two candidates -- one from the left and one from the right -- brazenly use the frustrations of the electorate to peddle quick fixes that will only feed its cynicism.
"Passion is vital, but you've got to have a strategy," Obama said May 7 at Howard University. "And your plan better include voting -- not just some of the time, but all the time." Sunday, at Rutgers University, the president repeated that message. He, again, lamented the low turnout of young voters. But this time he hammered home how their lack of participation contributes to the lack of progress on issues they care about.
"Apathy has consequences. It determines who our Congress is. It determines what policies they prioritize," the president said. He acknowledged the menace of big money and lobbyists on the nation's politics. And then he said something that runs counter to the campaign message of Donald Trump and especially Sen. Bernie Sanders, I-Vt.