Barack Obama has absolutely no intention of working with the GOP for the next two years despite any words to the contrary. Obama recently met with Congressional leaders for a grand total of one hour. Obama has spent the rest of his time berating Republicans all over the country.
A search for “Obama blames GOP” yields 39,500,000 hits.
A search for “Obama blames Republicans” yields 3,900,000 hits.
A search for “Obama blames..” yields 83,000,000 hits.
Obama has been warned by centrist Republicans that he is poisoning the well.
President Obama’s public shaming of congressional Republicans to act on a range of issues may be winning at the polls — but it risks alienating the people needed to reach bipartisan compromise.
While Obama has made a strategic calculation that he needs to marshal public support to push through his agenda, centrist Republicans warn the president and his allies could go too far with partisan events and campaign-style ads targeting GOP lawmakers.
One recent point of contention: Organizing for Action, Obama’s former campaign arm, made its first post-election foray into campaigning this week with ads pressuring swing-state Republicans to support new gun control measures.
Among the targets was Sen. Susan Collins (R-Maine), who is working to build support for a bill focused on cracking down on gun trafficking.
“The way to tackle this difficult issue is to continue to have a constructive dialogue. Obviously ads run against me are not what I would call constructive dialogue,” Collins told The Hill. “I personally have very little interest in the White House’s campaign activities on this issue. It’s just not a factor in my consideration.”
Obama needs Republican votes in the House to pass any legislation:
But to get anything accomplished Obama will need to convince the few remaining centrist Republicans to vote with him — and a public lobbying campaign could infuriate the many members not facing tough elections.
But that assumes working with the GOP to pass legislation now is the goal.
Barack Obama will spend the next two years demonizing Republicans at every turn and the monster he created, Organizing for America, will be the muscle. The real goal is 2014.
Obama has committed to raising money for fellow Democrats, agreed to help recruit viable candidates, and launched a political nonprofit group dedicated to furthering his agenda and that of his congressional allies. The goal is to flip the Republican-held House back to Democratic control, allowing Obama to push forward with a progressive agenda on gun control, immigration, climate change and the economy during his final two years in office, according to congressional Democrats, strategists and others familiar with Obama’s thinking.
“The president understands that to get anything done, he needs a Democratic majority in the House of Representatives,” said Rep. Steve Israel (N.Y.), chairman of the Democratic Congressional Campaign Committee. “To have a legacy in 2016, he will need a House majority in 2014, and that work has to start now.”
Obama’s actions are not one of a person seeking cooperation:
So far, though, most of the proposals have little traction in the Republican-controlled House. Obama’s decision to squarely blame the opposition for across-the-board spending cuts known as the sequester has also generated little goodwill across the aisle.
And it is clear Obama intends to continue to pound Republicans
Some Obama allies say the president views OFA as a way of marshaling — and extending beyond the traditional two years of a second term — his political power. The organization went largely dormant after his 2008 victory, mobilized only during late-inning pushes to secure health-care and Wall Street legislation.
Seeking major donations
This time is different. The group is already seeking $500,000 donations from major Obama campaign bundlers.
Within hours of Obama’s appearance Friday to talk about the spending cuts, OFA’s Jon Carson, a veteran of the first-term White House, sent out a mass e-mail declaring that “because congressional Republicans refused to act, devastating budget cuts known as the sequester are going into effect.”
John Boehner said that Obama intends to “annihilate” the GOP and he’s not alone.
The president is obviously going all-out — but not to avoid the $85 billion in spending cuts, known as the sequester, set to kick in on Friday. Obama doesn’t want to make a deal with Republicans. His fear-mongering is part of a concerted plan that extends far beyond the sequester crisis: to obliterate the Republican Party as a viable force in American political life.
His self-righteous rhetoric obscures a bitter truth: Obama is not trying to unite the country. He’s waging a class-based battle for political gain. His goal is to win back the House for Democrats in 2014, giving him a united Congress for his last two years in office and allowing him to pursue the most expansive government in American history.
Listening to Obama, an ordinary American might assume that the Republicans were forcing these harsh spending cuts on the president. In fact, they were the president’s idea, part of a compromise to make the 2011 debt-ceiling deal. And as Bob Woodward reminded readers in an op-ed last on Sunday, that agreement did not include the “new revenue” (i.e., tax hikes) that Obama pretends he asked for then: “When the president asks that a substitute for the sequester include not just spending cuts but also new revenue, he is moving the goal posts….that was not the deal he made.”
Obama, then, is not being truthful — nor is he making even minimal efforts to find a compromise with Republicans. It actually made news last week when the White House made a few perfunctory calls to GOP leaders.
Schoen and Caddell’s discomfort is palpable:
Obama has brought partisanship to a new low by creating a full-time political advocacy organization — Organizing for Action — funded by secret contributions from corporate elites. OFA’s founding is historically unprecedented. No president has ever affiliated himself with a national organization other than reelection campaigns. Obama has taken the Saul Alinsky organizing vision to a national level.
In earlier columns, we’ve described Obama as the most polarizing president in American history, but even we never imagined that he would be this divisive.
And they make a strong point:
Obama’s overreaching is much worse. He thinks he can do whatever he wants, even without Republicans votes.
Imagine if Republicans could not stop him. Imagine if democrats controlled both Houses of Congress. They would be the ultimate rubber stamp. You might not even find out what was in legislation after it was passed. Barack Obama would essentially be a dictator. Consider the following:
Earlier in the day, the president let his frustration over the stalled debt talks seep into an address on Latino issues, confessing that he’d like to “bypass Congress and change the laws on my own.”
He told the National Council of La Raza, “Believe me, the idea of doing things on my own is very tempting. I promise you.”
“Now, on other hand, as President, I cannot just impose my will on Congress — the Congress of the United States — even though sometimes I wish I could.”
Louis Seidman urges Obama to “give up” on the Constitution.
Nancy Pelosi was “proud” that Obama ignored the Constitution:
House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.) says she is “very glad” and “proud” that President Barack Obama appointed a director to the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB) and three members of the National Labor Relations Board (NLRB) without putting them through Senate confirmations.
We have the Courts, you say? What if Obama decides to ignore the Courts?
In what appears to be the continuation of a showdown among the three branches of federal government, the D. C. Circuit ruled today that President Obama’s January 2012 “recess” appointments of three members to the National Labor Relations Board (“Board”) were unconstitutional.
Yet Obama’s NLRB is ignoring that ruling. He is ignoring the Courts.
We face a doomsday scenario- a President disrespectful of the Constitution, an obsequious press, a rubber stamp Congress not inclined to do anything but enable Obama and the Court system ignored.
Not a dictator. Yet.
GOP control of the House is the only thing stopping a dictatorship. He won’t call himself a dictator, but he would be one in all but name. The 2014 election might be one of the most important elections in history of this country.