Obama bashes congressional obstruction in weekly address
January 28th, 2012
06:00 AM ET
2 years ago

Obama bashes congressional obstruction in weekly address

(CNN) - In his weekly address Saturday, President Barack Obama took aim at Congressional Republicans blocking White House nominations and pieces of legislation for what he said were political ends.

"Just two days ago, a senator from Utah promised to obstruct every single American I appoint to a judgeship or public service position – unless I fire the consumer watchdog I put in place to protect the American people from financial schemes or malpractice," Obama said.

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On Thursday, Utah Sen. Mike Lee released a statement promising to block consideration of judges and public servants after Obama appointed Richard Cordray head of the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau during Congress' winter break. Critics have claimed Congress wasn't technically in recess, making such an appointment unconstitutional.

"Given this president's blatant and egregious disregard both for proper constitutional procedures and the Senate's unquestioned role in such appointments, I find myself duty-bound to resist the consideration and approval of additional nominations until the president takes steps to remedy the situation," Lee said.

Obama took harsh aim at Lee and other Republicans in his address, calling their motives purely political.

"One of his aides told reporters that the senator plans to, and I'm quoting here, 'Delay and slow the process in order to get the president's attention,'" Obama said. "This isn't about me. We weren't sent here to wage perpetual political campaigns against each other. We were sent here to serve the American people. And they deserve better than gridlock and games. One senator gumming up the works for the whole country is certainly not what our founding fathers envisioned."

Obama said rules he proposed during Tuesday's State of the Union would remedy a broken system. He said all White House nominees should be given up-or-down votes within 90 days, and requests a bill from Congress limiting lawmakers from owning stocks in industries they influence.

"Tell your member of Congress that it's time to end the gridlock, and start tackling the issues that really matter – an economy built on American manufacturing, American energy, American skills and education, and a return to American values," Obama said. "An economy built to last."

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Filed under: President Obama
soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. Jonathan M

    "One senator gumming up the works for the whole country is certainly not what our founding fathers envisioned."

    Well that's where he's wrong. We're a Republic, so the minority does have the ability to gum up the government and it's working as intended. Now is that what we as Americans want? Perhaps not, Obama has to remember that the country are divided borderlining at 50% amongst the party lines, so it's not an ironclad rule that Obama will get.

    Three Branches Of The Government are working as intended.

    January 28, 2012 06:21 am at 6:21 am |
  2. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    Just imagine the state of the union if republicans had not obstructed every effort by our president to get out of the Bush republican near depression. Despite the GOP, we are moving forward, our foreign policy successes have crippled al Qaida, 23 months of private sector growth, over 3 million jobs created, the market has almost doubled, the American auto industry has been saved, more people have health care, and the premiums are no longer increasing by 40% per year, and seniors and veterans benefits have increased.

    January 28, 2012 06:47 am at 6:47 am |
  3. Wire Palladin, S. F.

    The republican clown show has shown that no GOP candidate should be president. It is funny how the millionaires in the republican party have waged war to take their party back from the teabaggers and teavangelicals. Rove and the swift boaters know that their party does not appeal to the majority of Americans, and have spent $20 million in Florida alone, to destroy Newt.

    January 28, 2012 06:52 am at 6:52 am |
  4. Beau Pamer

    It's funny how each party pretends to play a nice guy. Dems are leaning toward socialism, while the GOP all about protecting the corporations and money. What happened to middle class or the american people? they are slowly vanish to the poor category. I am so sick of politicians using the term " american people ". Anyways, most politicians are hungry animal and I am so sick most dumb american people complaining everything, but they rather vote America Idol instead.

    January 28, 2012 06:56 am at 6:56 am |
  5. chuck weidemann

    Someone has to stand up for the little guy,the underdog,aka middle class!! It's not warfare it's called being equals. Not expecting something for nothing. Tax breaks!! The term itself implies inequality! Work ...make your money...then pay what you owe. Want a break...well so do I and I work dam hard but don't make a million dollars a year and I pay my 35%.

    January 28, 2012 07:10 am at 7:10 am |
  6. Chris

    Previously,fillibutsters were extremely rare and would only happend a couple times a year. But since Obama became President, Republicans fillibuster litterally hundreds of bills each year. They fillibuster more times in one year then previously there had fillibusters in the entire history of Congress. This is nothing but mindless obstrustionism and pure partisanship.

    Then they turn around and blame the mess the country is in on Obama. The Republicans are deliberately sabotaging Obama's presidency all in a bid to return power and control back to themselves – and with no care to the great harm they are doing to the country in the process.

    January 28, 2012 07:41 am at 7:41 am |
  7. George

    This clown wont be happy until every last american is wearing lederhosen kissing his pinky ring. This man's obstructionist is another man's last stand at Thermopylae. GO back to Chicago Xerxes.

    January 28, 2012 07:45 am at 7:45 am |
  8. Anonymous

    Lee is pretty much the poster boy for GOBP obstructionism. He's one nasty piece of work.

    January 28, 2012 07:49 am at 7:49 am |
  9. Steve-Illinois

    "We weren't sent here to wage perpetual political campaigns against each other. "
    Waging perpetual political campaigns seems to be all this President is good at! He's done nothing but that, since campaigning in 08!
    "Elections have consequences!" "That's what elections are for!"
    Barack Obama

    They need to pay their "fair" share, as long as "fair" is determined by Obama.
    This President isn't stupid. He understands why capital gains aretaxed at a lower rate, he just chooses to ignore the reasoning because making it "fair" is better for his campaign!

    January 28, 2012 07:51 am at 7:51 am |
  10. Church

    What a bunch of vicious SOBs.

    January 28, 2012 07:54 am at 7:54 am |
  11. Peter

    With our current president, everything sentence he says revolves around what he did, is doing, or will do. So tired of this narcissistic behavior.

    January 28, 2012 08:27 am at 8:27 am |
  12. diridi

    I can tell you in one sentence is "Congress is Horrible". Get all these out of congress in next election. Please, for nation's sake. Obama2012.
    PO; please sign the inside trading bill inclusive of congress and senate. please, nation benefits....

    January 28, 2012 08:35 am at 8:35 am |
  13. Namejkane fl

    Every body knows that the teapublican have been obstructing progress on the economy,jobs programs and inferstructure improvements against the wishes of the American people by attaching extremest poison pills to all legislation that would help the economy. Only a moron would vote for the republicans for any office.

    January 28, 2012 08:44 am at 8:44 am |
  14. luckjoe

    Basically, Obama wants everything his way to push American into socialism with no challenges.

    January 28, 2012 08:50 am at 8:50 am |
  15. FIELD1stSGT

    Obama only appoints those that can further his goal of destruction of the United States. This man is an imposter, liar and a conspirator who along with George Soros intends to bring America to it's knees then to it's final destruction. Watch what he does not what he says. For he is the Anti-Christ of WWIII.

    January 28, 2012 08:56 am at 8:56 am |