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Obama is done even pretending to work with Republicans: If you can't beat 'em, ignore 'em
The Week ^ | February 21, 2014 | Jon Terbush

Posted on 02/21/2014 5:47:30 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet

President Obama is going solo.

Having seen his ambitious agenda run aground against Republican recalcitrance, Obama is pivoting to a more unilateral approach to achieve his goals. And when he must go through Congress, Obama has shown he's willing to eschew bipartisanship when it seems like an impossibility.

On Wednesday, the White House released some early details of the president's 2015 budget proposal, which is due out next month. The biggest news is that the budget will propose $56 billion in new spending, while dropping a key compromise that would result in smaller Social Security benefits. The latter idea, known as "chained CPI," would alter how the government calculates benefits increases for social welfare programs, and it's generally opposed by liberals. (You can read our more thorough explainer on chained CPI here.)

That might sound like an insignificant bit of wonky gibberish, but it's actually a sharp reversal. Obama proposed chained CPI in his budget last year, hoping it would convince Republicans to compromise on revenue increases. It was an attempt at striking that mythical "grand bargain" Obama and congressional Republicans have been talking about for years. But Republicans vehemently opposed any new tax revenue, and now Obama is no longer even offering the chained CPI carrot.

"Unfortunately, Republicans refused to even consider the possibility of raising some revenue," said Josh Earnest, a White House spokesman. "That is an unfortunate policy choice that Republicans themselves have made."

To be sure, White House budget proposals are largely symbolic documents that outline a president's ideal budget, not the budget that will actually be passed by Congress. But by yanking a GOP-friendly proposal from the outset, Obama has made clear that negotiating with Republicans is a hopeless cause.

Obama compromised with Republicans often during his first term, and often to liberals' dismay. As the GOP became more intractable though, that willingness to negotiate waned. House Republicans in particular have thrown a wrench in the president's agenda, blocking votes on popular bills that already cleared the Senate with bipartisan support.

The divide only widened over the course of last year, with Tea Party–aligned GOPers hijacking the party and pushing it further away from the center. In the resulting chaos, Republicans on multiple occasions couldn't even agree among themselves about what they wanted to achieve.

So when Republicans demanded a series of dwindling ransoms in last October's government funding and debt-ceiling fight, Obama stood firm and insisted he would not compromise. And when the debt ceiling came up again this year, the president, backed by congressional Democrats, refused to talk about hostages. Both times, the GOP caved, giving the president even less reason to bow to GOP pressure in the future.

Meanwhile, Obama has shifted away from directly dealing with Congress when he doesn't have to.

"America does not stand still, and neither will I," Obama said in his State of the Union address last month. "So wherever and whenever I can take steps without legislation to expand opportunity for more American families, that's what I'm going to do."

Making good on that vow, Obama has signed executive orders to streamline business regulations and raise the minimum wage for federal employees to $10.10 per hour. And this week, he called on the EPA to draft stricter fuel standards for large trucks.

Certainly, Republicans aren't completely unwilling to negotiate. They did, after all, compromise on the mini budget deal that passed earlier this month. But that was more about averting another disastrous government shutdown, and hardly a sign of a rosy new era of legislative bipartisanship.

By and large, the GOP has been either unwilling or unable to compromise with the president. Obama, it seems, has now decided that even trying to compromise just isn't worth his time.


TOPICS: Government; Politics/Elections
KEYWORDS: congress; gop; obama; republicans
When did he start?

Jon Terbush is a staff writer for TheWeek.com covering politics, sports, and other things he finds interesting. He has previously written for Talking Points Memo, Raw Story, and Business Insider.

1 posted on 02/21/2014 5:47:31 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I’m not sure we have a president. I think maybe Bush’s dog just took a dump on the way out.


2 posted on 02/21/2014 5:50:14 PM PST by Viennacon (M)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“When did he start?”

Man! You stole my thunder!

Obama has NEVER “worked” with anybody but his own RAT Party Minions, the Muzzie Brotherhood and anybody that HATES AMERICA as he does.

That dipsticks like Boehner, Cantor, McConnell, McCornyn, et al can’t seem to figure this simple fact of life out is testimony to their deep and permanent stupidity.


3 posted on 02/21/2014 5:52:44 PM PST by Howie66 (John Wayne McCornyn...he's just like US! Honest!)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Having seen his ambitious agenda run aground against Republican recalcitrance, Obama is pivoting to a more unilateral approach to achieve his goals. And when he must go through Congress, Obama has shown he's willing to eschew bipartisanship when it seems like an impossibility.

The problem with this picture is that it is not "Republicans" per se, that constitute the issue. The "Republicans" represent several hundred million people who disagree with Obama's personal agenda and warped and twisted Utopian dream of transferring America into a Socialist state with a centralized government.

4 posted on 02/21/2014 5:54:30 PM PST by olezip (Time obliterates the fictions of opinion and confirms the decisions of nature. ~ Cicero)
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To: olezip
Obama's personal agenda and warped and twisted Utopian dream of transferring America into a Socialist state with a centralized government Third World $hithole like his father came out of.

Fixed it for you.

5 posted on 02/21/2014 6:08:30 PM PST by MuttTheHoople (Nothing is more savage and brutal than justifiably angry Americans. Don’t believe me? Ask the Germa)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

I remember back in 2004 how those big babies, Reid and Pelosi whined their @$$es off on TV on election night about how the mean old Wepublicans better “share” and not hog the government. Damn communists. Unfortunately, the morons in the GOP fell for it instead of sticking it to the ‘RATS the way the ‘RATS are sticking it to them.


6 posted on 02/21/2014 6:15:03 PM PST by FlingWingFlyer (As government expands, liberty contracts. - President Ronald W. Reagan)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Make this a true “Year of Action:” Impeach Soetoro-Obama in 2014, PERIOD.


7 posted on 02/21/2014 6:15:18 PM PST by Graewoulf (Democrats' Obamacare Socialist Health Insur. Tax violates U.S. Constitution AND Anti-Trust Law.)
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To: olezip
"The "Republicans" represent several hundred million people who disagree with Obama's personal agenda and warped and twisted Utopian dream ..."

..... I bet the majority of Americans are, or at least would be, against this socialist coupe and takeover of America ..... they just don't understand what is happening yet. Once they begin to realize that the criticism levied against this President and his administration was not at all about race ... but rather against the fundamental political overthrow of this country by communist insurgency .... they will finally wake up from their ill timed slumber .... only to realize it is too late to stop the rising Red Dawn.

8 posted on 02/21/2014 6:17:23 PM PST by R_Kangel ( "A Nation of Sheep ..... Will Beget ..... a Nation Ruled by Wolves.")
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
If you can't beat 'em, ignore 'em

Why not? What's Boehner going to do about it?

9 posted on 02/21/2014 6:20:12 PM PST by stevem
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

10 posted on 02/21/2014 6:24:27 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both.)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

“As democracy is perfected, the office of President represents, more and more closely, the inner soul of the people. On some great and glorious day the plain folks of the land will reach their heart’s desire at last and the White House will be occupied by a downright moron.”

-— H.L. Mencken, The Baltimore Evening Sun, July 26, 1920


11 posted on 02/21/2014 7:00:16 PM PST by DJ Taylor (Once again our country is at war, and once again the Democrats have sided with our enemy.)
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To: DJ Taylor

12 posted on 02/21/2014 7:10:34 PM PST by 2ndDivisionVet (I will raise $2M for Sarah Palin's next run, what will you do?)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet

Think back to 2009.

Obama (Mr. “I Won”) and the democrats were absolutely giddy with their power.
They carried on like addicts who had stumbled on a suitcase of free dope.

They never even tried to make it look like they were seeking cooperation with republicans.

Think of Nancy Pelosi arrogantly parading through the streets with her big gavel and her gang of idiots following behind like the lemmings that they are.


13 posted on 02/21/2014 7:40:30 PM PST by Iron Munro ("Show me the man, and I'll show you the crime." - Lavrentiy Beria (& Eric Holder))
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
(from the title) :"Obama is done even pretending to work with Republicans: If you can't beat 'em, ignore 'em".
Harry Reid is done even pretending to work with Republicans: If you can't beat 'em, ignore 'em, and pocket the legislation
And then they want to know why people have such a low opinion of Congress effectiveness .. ?
14 posted on 02/21/2014 8:34:29 PM PST by Tilted Irish Kilt (Enlightened statesmen will not always be at the helm. -- James Madison)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
If you can't beat 'em, ignore 'em

Only because he can ignore them. Like my congressman, Rob Woodall says, "He was elected by the majority, so there is nothing we can do". Congress has no guts. They are of no use to We The People, and should be 100% replaced.

I will do what I can to get rid of my current "Representative".

15 posted on 02/21/2014 8:40:05 PM PST by GingisK
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To: Viennacon

Don’t insult Bush’s dog that way! Besides, unlike the Clintons before them, the Bush’s left the house clean when they departed.


16 posted on 02/21/2014 9:33:30 PM PST by MrChips (Ad sapientiam pertinet aeternarum rerum cognitio intellectualis - St. Augustine)
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To: 2ndDivisionVet
Obama is done even pretending to work with Republicans: If you can't beat 'em, ignore 'em

Rubbish.
Obama has never "work(ed) with Republicans", he has only rolled the RINOs.

17 posted on 02/22/2014 3:27:37 AM PST by Amagi (Lenin: "Socialized Medicine is the Keystone to the Arch of the Socialist State.")
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