Obama warns he's got 'naughty and nice list'
November 30th, 2012
01:25 PM ET
1 year ago

Obama warns he's got 'naughty and nice list'

Hatfield, Pennsylvania (CNN) – A small town, an energetic crowd, and a bustling factory backdrop. President Barack Obama's remarks in Hatfield, Pennsylvania, on Friday may have some Americans wondering if the president was back on the campaign trail. In a way, he is.

The president traveled to Pennsylvania for a campaign-style event, where he toured a local factory and delivered remarks on the looming fiscal cliff, a series of tax hikes and spending cuts set to kick in at the beginning of the year if Congress and the White House fail to reach a deficit-reduction deal.

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"I've been keeping my own naughty and nice list for Washington," the president said after a tour of the The Rodon Group manufacturing facility, which produces more than 95% of the parts for K'NEX Brands toys. "So you should keep your eye on who gets K'NEX this year. There are going to be some members of Congress who get them and some who don't."

The event, intended to mobilize support for the president's proposed solutions to the fiscal cliff, comes as Republicans on Capitol Hill insist that recent negotiations with the White House have been unproductive.

Earlier Friday morning, House Majority Whip Kevin McCarthy released a video featuring a small business in nearby Collegeville, Pennsylvania, whose owner, Jerry Gorski, opposes the tax increases being pushed by Obama and Democrats on Capitol Hill. They propose raising rates on families making more than $250,000 in addition to closing loopholes, limiting deductions and increasing taxes on capital gains and dividends.

Republicans, however, staunchly oppose a raise in tax rates.

But the president remained undeterred in his speech Friday, telling the crowd, "Our long term goal is to get our long term deficit under control in a way that is balanced and is fair. That would be good for businesses, for our economy, for future generations. And I believe both parties can and will work together in the coming weeks to get that done."

In recent days Republicans have expressed dismay over the $1.6 trillion in revenue the president has put forward as part of a possible agreement - a higher amount they say they expected.

While Obama did not mention any specifics Friday, he did hint that the deal would not be easily agreed upon, saying "In Washington nothing is easy so there is going to be some prolonged negotiations. And all of us are going to have to get out of our comfort zones to make that happen."

And just in case those attending the event missed the subtle holiday-themed deadline of the fiscal negotiations, the president was happy to remind them, saying "If Congress does nothing, every family in America will see their income taxes automatically go up on January first…That's a Scrooge Christmas."


Filed under: Fiscal Cliff • President Obama
soundoff (215 Responses)
  1. lmc2011

    Wow, is this a street thug or the president of the United States? Can't tell the difference anymore.

    November 30, 2012 03:58 pm at 3:58 pm |
  2. Rudy NYC

    Ed1 wrote:

    Rudy in NY,

    As always you get it wrong..... Sandy was covered by insurance not lowering the standards by the Democrats so everyone could get the American Dream when they couldn't afford it.
    --------------------------–
    Ed1, you need to check your facts. Wasn't it Pres. Bush who promoted the idea of "everyone can own a home and their own piece of the American Dream" a decade ago? Yes, it was. It was part of his rationale for the 2003 round of the Bush Tax Cuts. Republicans pushed that policy, not the Democrats. Republicans were running everything, dude..

    November 30, 2012 03:59 pm at 3:59 pm |
  3. Woman In California

    Blah blah the wheel's off your trailer

    @Critical Thinking

    Where are you from??? Mississippi, Alabama, Georgia??? I bet you never had a job in your whole life. The only list you'd make is the welfare list!

    ------

    Truth be told. These idiots are lying about making 700k a year salaries and they know it. Most of them probably don't work at all and IF they do, its probably throwing peanuts at the elephants in the circus and cleaning up their crap afterwards. What clowns and liars they are.

    November 30, 2012 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  4. BailOutBob

    I vehemently object to the politically expedient categorization of households earning $250,000 (or even somewhat above) as "rich".  In some parts of the country, such as New York City, San Francisco and Los Angeles, these households are far from "rich".  After federal and high state and local income taxes, health insurance, high rents or mortgages, student loans, child care or education expenses, car payments and living expenses, there is relatively  little left.  Most of these folks are not even close to millionaires and never will be. They struggle daily with figuring out how to get their children the best education possible, how to deal with unanticipated medical expenses and how to find some money to save for retirement.   In these high cost of living centers, this group is like the so-called "middle class" across the rest of America that the Dems purportedly want to help.  Equating them with millionaires and the " fat cat" rich is simply erroneous. Should we pity these folks, absolutely not–there are many much worse off that do deserve sympathy and assistance; but neither should these households be attacked nor should class envy or resentment be bred against them, which is exactly what the President is doing. If this redistributionist President really wants to tax the rich, he should propose to implement a wealth tax and stop attacking the households  who create jobs and contribute to the growth of the economy. I doubt his adoring Hollywood left and wealthy liberal donors would embrace a wealth tax. Maybe he should try to propose that and see how they, as well Mr. Buffet, like it.  

    November 30, 2012 04:01 pm at 4:01 pm |
  5. Name learn to write

    Wilson. Why do all american corps have their hands out. Corperate welfare is killing our country. Stop being a sore loser

    November 30, 2012 04:03 pm at 4:03 pm |
  6. rs

    Wilson-

    Yeah that knuckle down stuff really works when you work at Walmart for minumum wage and wind up in the ER that costs $16,000 a day. Get real.Face it the GOP is rigging the game so only the rich can play.

    November 30, 2012 04:04 pm at 4:04 pm |
  7. Ray E. (Georgia)

    THE REAL TOM PANE ?? Really?,
    Now you know all we (and they) got was promises followed by IOU'S and Tons of Red Ink! We, you and me, are over 16 Trillion in the hole. And you want to give Obama the Keys to the Kingdom? The Libs can put it where the sun don't shine! You give away the Store, you won't have any Store, as if you have the store now.

    November 30, 2012 04:05 pm at 4:05 pm |
  8. Laura

    A tax increase on the wealthy covers only _8_days of the government spending. It might make a few of you socialists feel better, but it is not the answer. We need spending cuts and more business revenue to get out of this mess. I think more than half of Amercia flunked bacic math!

    November 30, 2012 04:09 pm at 4:09 pm |
  9. rs

    NameFrank Deery-
    That's easy. He is getting us (the people who live and work in the U.S.) to contact the GOP idots in Congress and tell them what we want. After all, they work for us (not Grover Norquist despite what he thor they think!).

    November 30, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  10. Rudy NYC

    A True American wrote:

    @ Rudy NYC – Where did I say that we shouldn't help victims of natural disasters or tragedies? Oh, that's right, I didn't, because I was referring people who expect cradle-to-grave government assistance because they don't want to put in the effort to contribute to society, not folks who find themselves at the mercy of circumstances beyond their control.
    ----------------
    Look, I understand the frusrations of so many conservatives in red states. You look around you, and can find numerous examples of people living off of other people's money. If I had to look at it everyday, it would probably disgust me, too. In fact, it does disgust me.

    Red states TAKE far more money from the federal government than what they pay into it. Yet, the residents of those states are the loudest voices complaining that people should be NOT BE TAKERS, and that they should pay their own way by earning it. Guess what, the blue states pay their way and pay the way for all of those red states full of freedumb fighters.

    November 30, 2012 04:10 pm at 4:10 pm |
  11. Critical Thinking

    The Real Tom Paine you are so funny, really you are so funny.

    November 30, 2012 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  12. greg0145

    I know i'm not the first to think this but, who the F cares!!!! Maybe he could focus on helping the country. Gosh he is horrible at everything he does.

    November 30, 2012 04:13 pm at 4:13 pm |
  13. rs

    BailOutBob-
    Go to Census.gov, get a hold of Median Family income for your state and the United States. Note that $250 k is about 5 times bigger than that number. One thing I know for sure- if I pulled down that much a year (exactly 5x what I do now as a 30 year professiona), I'd feel pretty rich- and so would just about anyone else.

    November 30, 2012 04:14 pm at 4:14 pm |
  14. Lando

    Critical Thinking...

    You are a true republiban..Obama is a human and is allowed to take vacations. Alll previous presidents took vacations more than he had. Dont tell you me if you are president, you will not....IDIOT

    November 30, 2012 04:16 pm at 4:16 pm |
  15. rs

    True American-

    I am guessing you'll be giving your Social Security back when the time comes and not enrolling in Medicare because you're all set, right? Nice of you to try to set a standard for many for whome those services are the only resource between them and poverty and death.

    November 30, 2012 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  16. Wake up People!

    lmc2011.....Street thug huh? Is that code for anything??? Perhaps the enn word??
    President Barack Obama a Harvard graduate a street thug.

    I guess because Bush definitely reminded me of a circus clown. Except the clown was much brighter.

    November 30, 2012 04:18 pm at 4:18 pm |
  17. Nick

    While Obama is out campaigning, please ask him to explain how his $1.6 trillion tax increase over a DECADE is going to offset an ANNUAL deficit of $1.2 trillion. Despite some high-priced college degrees he, Reid, and Pelosi et al evidently can't do basic math (which explains Giethner's tax return folly). If they can't offer specific cuts, now, to get spending under control I vote we all take our lumps of coal and go over the cliff – that will at least solve the problem.

    November 30, 2012 04:21 pm at 4:21 pm |
  18. Sniffit

    "Actually, true Americans are those who understand the value of hard work and personal responsibility."

    So I guess we can disclude all the trust-fund-baby silver spoon d-bags that bankroll the GOP...born on third base thinking they hit a homer.

    "True Americans don't whine and cry every time life gets a little hard, but rather they buckle down, get through the rough patch, and come out on the other side smarter and stronger."

    I'm sorry, but did you just say "wwaaaaaaaaaaaaah, my income tax rate on my 8 figure salary is going up by 4%...now i have to throw an emo tantrum!!!!! Baby wants its special treatment and subsidies noooow!!!!"

    "True Americans don't go to the government with their hands out to cover mortgages they shouldn't have taken or couldn't afford in the first place, student loans for degrees that have no practical purpose in the real world, or assistance with food, utilities, or shelter UNTIL they have exhausted every other possible option to take care of it themselves."

    Right...just with their hands out for special tax deductions and loopholes that only 1% of the population gets to enjoy...or unnecessary industry subsidies while reporting record profits during the largest recession since the Great Depression. THose aren't handouts tho, because they're "entitled" to them, right?

    "True Americans know that the money in someone else's pocket is not theirs, because they didn't earn it."

    Oh goody....so the red states are going to start paying back all the blue states for the federal taxes the blue states pay in order to provide federal aid to the red states, which almost universally receive more in federal aid than they contribute in taxes?

    November 30, 2012 04:22 pm at 4:22 pm |
  19. Sniffit

    "Actually, true Americans are those who understand the value of hard work and personal responsibility."

    So I guess we can disclude all the trust-fund-baby silver spoon d-bags that bankroll the GOP...born on third base thinking they hit a homer.

    November 30, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  20. Sniffit

    "True Americans don't go to the government with their hands out to cover mortgages they shouldn't have taken or couldn't afford in the first place, student loans for degrees that have no practical purpose in the real world, or assistance with food, utilities, or shelter UNTIL they have exhausted every other possible option to take care of it themselves."

    Right...just with their hands out for special tax deductions and loopholes that only 1% of the population gets to enjoy...or unnecessary industry subsidies while reporting record profits during the largest recession since the Great Depression. THose aren't handouts tho, because they're "entitled" to them, right?

    "True Americans know that the money in someone else's pocket is not theirs, because they didn't earn it."

    Oh goody....so the red states are going to start paying back all the blue states for the federal taxes the blue states pay in order to provide federal aid to the red states, which almost universally receive more in federal aid than they contribute in taxes?

    November 30, 2012 04:23 pm at 4:23 pm |
  21. Sniffit

    "While Obama is out campaigning, please ask him to explain how his $1.6 trillion tax increase over a DECADE is going to offset an ANNUAL deficit of $1.2 trillion. Despite some high-priced college degrees he, Reid, and Pelosi et al evidently can't do basic math (which explains Giethner's tax return folly). If they can't offer specific cuts, now, to get spending under control I vote we all take our lumps of coal and go over the cliff – that will at least solve the problem."

    Because that's not the only thing he's proposed, so stop pretending it is. He just proposed a full on budget and the GOP rejected it out of hand because the first two lines didn't say "repeal Obamacare and destroy Medicare."

    November 30, 2012 04:24 pm at 4:24 pm |
  22. Amused

    Oh, good.
    More taxes, more spending, more debt!
    That is outstanding!
    That is what the American people voted for.
    I hope the enjoy it when they get it.

    And they probably will until the world currency and bond markets decides that lending the US over a trillion dollars is year is not a good idea.

    After that? Massive spending cuts leading to Greek style riots in the American streets. But, that is what we voted for!
    Enjoy!

    November 30, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  23. TEAPARTY MIKE

    Howard Dean let the cat out of the bag on MSNBC. Howard Dean says the best deal for the Democrats is to go off the fiscal cliff. That way the Democrats, whose leader is Obama, get the Defense spending cuts they want through sequestration. And get this, they get the tax increases on everyone, including the middle class. Howard Dean says Democrats want to increase taxes on the middle class. He then actually goes on to say this will cause a recession but will be for the best in the long term. So Democrats really want to increase taxes on the middle class, not avoid them like Obama is saying. And they will try and blame Republicans for what they really want. Not sure how this would ever really work. If we go off the fiscal cliff House Republicans will quickly pass a tax cut for the middle class the same or very similar to the Bush tax cuts that expired and send it to the Senate. Would Senate Democrats really not pass it and let the middle class tax increase stand? If the Senate passed it would Obama veto it and let the middle class tax increase stand? How could Obama and Democrats blame the middle class tax increase and the resulting recession on Republicans when it is them who refuesed to pass a middle class tax cut and Democrats like Howard Dean are on record saying Democrats want the tax increase on the middle class. Obama and Democrats are a total joke and a pack of liers. This is all going to crash on Obama's head.

    November 30, 2012 04:25 pm at 4:25 pm |
  24. Sniffit

    "Wow, is this a street thug or the president of the United States? Can't tell the difference anymore."

    Try maybe looking at the white half then, you racist pig.

    November 30, 2012 04:26 pm at 4:26 pm |
  25. Paul Wong

    Obama has the people's backing by his re-election to tighten his vise grips around the GOP necks and other sensitive parts.
    GOP will become irrelevant soon.

    November 30, 2012 04:27 pm at 4:27 pm |
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