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Obama’s first year yields few results in drive for bipartisanship (Ridiculous article)
The Hill ^ | December 30, 2009 | Sam Youngman

Posted on 12/30/2009 2:34:50 PM PST by jazusamo

President Barack Obama campaigned as the candidate who would work across the aisle and bring Republicans into the debate. But in his first year in office, he’s discovered it’s tough to change Washington.

Obama has reached out to GOPers on a number of issues, inviting Republican lawmakers to the White House to discuss the stimulus package, the war in Afghanistan and healthcare.

Those efforts, however, have yielded almost no results in the voting columns as partisan tension remains high and Republicans have dug in to oppose the president's policies on climate change, healthcare and the economy.

During the campaign, Obama said that Vice President Joe Biden would “be able to help me turn the page on ugly partisanship in Washington.” Obama described himself as “a big believer in working with the other side of the aisle.”

“Even if we've got a majority of Democrats, I think it’s very important to listen to Republicans, to respect them,” Obama said in the spring of 2008.

But almost immediately, Obama’s effort to pass a $787 billion stimulus package met with solid opposition from Republicans, who have continued to criticize spending they say has not produced enough jobs.

Obama’s offer of $300 billion in tax cuts in the stimulus as a way of attracting GOP support failed to win over recalcitrant lawmakers, even though the level of tax cuts came as a surprise at the time.

The divide only worsened as the healthcare debate wore on through the year and Tea Partiers and aspiring 2012 GOP candidates ratcheted up the rhetoric, accusing the president of everything from socialism to “death panels” for the elderly.

Republicans say they have tried valiantly to work with Obama by providing the president with ideas to improve the economy that aren’t focused on spending.

“You might remember that Senate Republicans began the year hopeful that the president would actually make good on his campaign promises to reach across the aisle and build consensus,” said one GOP aide, who argued the divide began with the stimulus.

“People were skeptical of Obama’s rhetoric, but nobody could have predicted the surge in partisanship that his administration would wage over the first year. And their fierce partisan approach has become a major reason why independent voters are sprinting away from Democrats.”

Republicans did approach the administration with ideas for ways to stimulate the economy, the aide said, “ideas like fixing housing, reducing taxes on job creators and limiting spending to projects that would create jobs quickly.”

“Democrats didn’t take any of our ideas, and the stimulus has been a huge disappointment to unemployed Americans who were told it would help them get a job,” the aide said. “So when the health care debate began late in the spring, Republicans were naturally skeptical that the administration would earnestly seek input.”

But administration officials said that Obama has sought to include Republicans at every turn, even as the minority party has made clear that it has no interest in helping Obama get anything done.

“The president has repeatedly gone to great lengths to give Republicans in Congress a seat at the table as he’s confronted some of the difficult issues that Washington has ignored for too long," one senior administration official said. “Unfortunately, time and again, Republicans have put their political and partisan interests ahead of the nation’s and refused the president’s invitation to find common ground.”

Administration officials have repeatedly pointed to a February incident when Obama, heading to Capitol Hill to talk with both parties about the stimulus. Before the president even made it to the other end of Pennsylvania Avenue for the meeting, the GOP issued a press statement rebuking Obama and criticizing his plans for the stimulus.

There have been some examples of bipartisanship in the first year of Obama’s White House, an administration official noted.

The vote to confirm Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor was bipartisan, contracting reform enjoys the support of Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) and many Republicans have applauded the president's new strategy for Afghanistan.

Republican strategist Kevin Madden said that Obama's talk of bipartisan outreach has “been all pageantry but no practice.”

“They gave up at the first sign of opposition,” Madden said.

But Ross Baker, an expert on the presidency and a professor at Rutgers University, said that Obama's “effort was a sincere one.”

“It's sort of like a missionary who goes to a primitive tribe and tries to convert them from cannibalism and ends up eating human beings,” Baker said.

Heading into the midterm election year of 2010, voices from all sides agree that there is little hope that Obama and Republicans will be able to find common ground in the new year.

“It will get worse until the first Tuesday after the first Monday of next November, when voters will have a chance to express their outrage with the Democratic supermajority,” the Senate GOP aide said.

But the White House said Obama isn't giving up.

“The president will continue to look for ways to work with Republicans in Congress not because it’s easy – it hasn’t been -- but because he believes it’s in the best interests of the country,” a senior administration official said.

TOPICS: Culture/Society; Government; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: 111th; bho44; bipartisanship; fourth100days; gop; obama
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Obama and the Dems' idea of bipartisanship is the Repubs voting for anything the Dems come up with.
1 posted on 12/30/2009 2:34:52 PM PST by jazusamo
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To: jazusamo

maybe it’s cause he’s such a caustic dick that he makes everyone hate him.

2 posted on 12/30/2009 2:35:59 PM PST by the invisib1e hand (if you can read this you're too close.)
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To: jazusamo

There was no such attempt at bi-partisanship.

3 posted on 12/30/2009 2:38:00 PM PST by GeronL (http://libertyfic.proboards,com)
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To: jazusamo

I don’t compromise with conceited ill-educated Muslim idiots.

It appears that those Republicans wishing to stay in office don’t either.

4 posted on 12/30/2009 2:38:21 PM PST by Da Coyote
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To: jazusamo
Unreal article. It failed to mention all of the closed-door meetings held exclusively for Democrats, the underhanded side deals, shutting out and excluding Republicans from legislative meetings.

Yeah, the Democrats are really extenders of the olive branch. Unbelievable.

5 posted on 12/30/2009 2:38:59 PM PST by Mengerian
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To: jazusamo

"We won."

6 posted on 12/30/2009 2:39:43 PM PST by Jeff Chandler (:: The government will do for health care what it did for real estate. ::)
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To: jazusamo

Another word for “so stupid, not one Republican wants to vote for it.”

7 posted on 12/30/2009 2:43:15 PM PST by HiTech RedNeck (I am in America but not of America (per bible: am in the world but not of it))
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To: jazusamo

Obama = the most divisive President EVER!

8 posted on 12/30/2009 2:44:31 PM PST by taxcontrol
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To: Mengerian

Exactly...Youngman must have close ties to Zer0 and his thugs.

9 posted on 12/30/2009 2:44:42 PM PST by jazusamo (But there really is no free lunch, except in the world of political rhetoric,.: Thomas Sowell)
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To: Da Coyote

That’s it exactly! Arlen Specter said on “Fox News Sunday” last weekend that the Republicans had a caucus right after the Inauguration, and decided to never compromise or work with Obama on anything. They knew that only if they defeated him every chance they got that they would not be able to win the White House in 2012. Jim DeMint was on the show at thw time and confirmed it.

So even if Obama DID try to compromise, it was useless. The Republicans - in the Senate at least - are going to refuse to work with Obama on every and anything. They want him GONE.

10 posted on 12/30/2009 2:45:20 PM PST by worst-case scenario (Striving to reach the light)
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To: worst-case scenario

I dont believe anything the traitor Arlen Spector says, and I doubt any such meeting wes held.

However i want Obama Gone too.

11 posted on 12/30/2009 2:51:02 PM PST by Venturer
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To: jazusamo
W was a very good governor of Texas. He reached across the aisle and the Demos responded - they got things done in Austin.
When W won the Presidency, I'm sure the Demos in Washington decided to oppose him every step of the way to make him look bad. The Demos are now reaping the fruits of their bitter harvest. So typical of Demos: they cannot see two hours in front of them, much less to the next election cycle.
12 posted on 12/30/2009 2:51:26 PM PST by jeffc (They're coming to take me away! Ha-ha, hey-hey, ho-ho!)
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To: jazusamo
Obama’s offer of $300 billion in tax cuts in the stimulus...

Was a bunch of baloney.

13 posted on 12/30/2009 2:55:16 PM PST by facedown (Armed in the Heartland)
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To: jazusamo

The Libs just want the GOP to share in their failures and since that’s not happening they want to blame the GOP for not being “bipartisan”.

14 posted on 12/30/2009 2:55:39 PM PST by tobyhill
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To: tobyhill

Agree...If healthcare and cap and trade do pass the Rats know they’re going to get all the blame. They also know it will kill many of them in 2010 and 2012, the Repubs know it too and are holding fast.

15 posted on 12/30/2009 3:01:00 PM PST by jazusamo (But there really is no free lunch, except in the world of political rhetoric,.: Thomas Sowell)
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To: jazusamo

Oh, yes. I remember Obama’s greatest attempt at bi-partisanship...the day he invited Republican lawmakers to the White House and rejected any compromise with them by announcing “I won.”

16 posted on 12/30/2009 3:06:43 PM PST by Harpo Speaks (Honk! Honk! Honk! Either it's foggy out, or make that a dozen hard boiled eggs.)
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To: Jeff Chandler
"We Won."

"I don't want the folks who created the mess to do a lot of talking. I want them just to get out of the way so we can clean up the mess."

Now that's some sweet, sweet bipartisanship!

17 posted on 12/30/2009 3:06:49 PM PST by seowulf (Petraeus, cross the Rubicon.)
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To: jazusamo
After listening to a critique of the nearly nine hundred billion dollars stimulus package from Republican Congressional leaders, along with some helpful suggestions on how to fix it, President Barack Obama had a two word answer.

"I won," President Obama said, indicating why the Republicans were not going to have any significant input into the bill. President Barack Obama was echoing sentiments by House Speaker Nancy Pelosi who had explained by the House Democratic leadership version Barack Obama to Republicans "I Won" of the stimulus bill was going to pass with or without Republicans.

The reaction that comes to mind is, "It's like that, huh?"

Previously President Barack Obama had indicated that he wanted as much bipartisan buy in for the stimulus package as possible. In the normal course of things, that would mean incorporating some Republican ideas for using tax cuts rather than spending programs into the stimulus bill in the spirit of bipartisan compromise in order to get large bipartisan majorities for passage of the same.

Spector is a liar and this Sam guy thinks we have no memory or google.

18 posted on 12/30/2009 3:17:58 PM PST by BARLF
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To: Mengerian

They can get away with articles like this because there’s so many sheople in this country who live with their heads buried in the sand and will drink any flavored koolaid they are given by the libs. My brother-in-law is a case in point. He keeps wanting to blame Bush for all that this man has done wrong.

19 posted on 12/30/2009 3:21:01 PM PST by SoldierDad (Proud Dad of a U.S. Army Infantry Soldier whose wife is expecting twins SONS.)
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Great post, right on!

20 posted on 12/30/2009 3:21:13 PM PST by jazusamo (But there really is no free lunch, except in the world of political rhetoric,.: Thomas Sowell)
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