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.
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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.
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