February 3rd, 2010
11:15 AM ET
12 years ago

Obama rips politically motivated GOP 'obstruction'


President Obama answered questions from Senate Democrats Wednesday. (Getty Images.)

Washington (CNN) - President Obama tore into the Republican opposition on Capitol Hill Wednesday, blaming the GOP for what he called politically motivated opposition on virtually every issue.

Democrats have been willing to incorporate Republican ideas on health care and other issues, he said, but Republicans have not been willing to do the same.

Addressing a gathering of Senate Democrats, Obama promised to "call (Republicans) out when (Democrats) extend a hand and get a fist in return."

Several Democrats facing tough election fights this November were given time to ask the president questions on high-profile issues such as trade and deficit reduction. Much of the president's time, however, was used to lash out at GOP tactics.

Senate Republicans, he said, have tried to employ the filibuster more over the past year than in all of the 1950s and 1960s combined. The GOP's strategy has been "20 years of obstruction packed into one," he said.

"If you want to govern, you can't just say no," he argued. "It can't be about just scoring points." The filibuster, he added, only works as intended if there is a "genuine spirit of compromise."

Updated:  1:07 p.m.

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Filed under: Democrats • GOP • Popular Posts • President Obama • Senate
soundoff (241 Responses)
  1. If you want something ruined, put a republican in charge

    It is a shame that Obama has to deal with the worst of the low life scum from the party of lies, hate and obstruction.

    February 3, 2010 10:44 am at 10:44 am |
  2. Jimmy James

    There he goes again. He claims he wants to reach across the aisle. He campaigned on uniting this country yet when given an opportunity to say something to one crowd about the other crowd , he can't resist.

    February 3, 2010 10:45 am at 10:45 am |
  3. sifto77

    what a joke–Obama has had a filibuster proof majority up to now and he simply plowed ahead with things Americans did not want–now he is back to blaming repubs when they were not invited to the games! grow up Obama–we live in the real world–not some "i won, you lost" haven..

    February 3, 2010 10:47 am at 10:47 am |
  4. An 8 year old ELEPHANT dung heap, does not transform into compost in just 1 year!

    The reds are on the run President Obama, just keep chasing them!

    The facts will be all the energy drink you need!

    February 3, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  5. Sniffit

    Rip all you want, Barry, it's called saving the country as we know it. GOP SHOULD obstruct your policies all they can. HOWEVER, dems own the house, senate, and presidency. SO, what is the problem? Obviously a lot of DEMS are opposed to some of the OBAMA policies as well, otherwise the dem majorities could have just swept the GOP over. DEMS did NOT NEED 1 SINGLE GOP vote to pass anything.

    February 3, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  6. Obama talks too much

    Obama is a hypocrite.

    The man rips down anyone that opposes his incredibly destructive economic policies.

    Instead of shooting off his big mouth, Obama should use his huge ears to listen to what the country needs–less of his intrusion into American's lives. Jobs will be created if he steps aside, spends less, taxes less and allows the private sector to function.

    February 3, 2010 10:48 am at 10:48 am |
  7. Fitz in Texas

    "Democrats have been willing to incorporate Republican ideas on health care and other issues, he said, but Republicans have not been willing to do the same."-----Joe Wilson said it best, "YOU LIE"

    The Democrats have NOT been willing to incorporate Republicans ideas on health care and other issues, unless you call slamming the door in the Republicans face, like the Democrats have done, willing to incorporate.

    February 3, 2010 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  8. RH

    The Republicans do it because the fickle, incredibly message-susceptible American electorate goes for it every single time.

    February 3, 2010 10:49 am at 10:49 am |
  9. Randolph Carter, I'm no expert but...

    Because the republicans must get everything they want on every issue, or they take their ball and go home. We tried it their way and they screwed up royally. And they just want to practice more of the same. Please. We had unprecedented low taxes for the best part of 30 years and all of our jobs went bye bye and our infrastructure crumbled. We deregulated the banks and nearly trashed the world economy. We busted the unions and real income stagnated as inflation and corporate profit went through the roof. Epic fail, republicans. And the funniest part is that Americans are so stupid, that they believe the republicans when they blame others and tout these very failed policies as the cure. Let the grownups clean up the problems you created, morons. Your policies belong in the trash bin of history. Have a nice day!

    February 3, 2010 10:50 am at 10:50 am |
  10. Dar

    Odumbo, you are the one seperating this country with your retoric. You spew more lies and half truths than any president ever has.
    You spoke at the repub. meeting in Baltimoe not just a week ago and thanked them for some of their ideas.
    NOW you are in front of your little croneys spewing hateful BS when you should be telling them to keep extending your hand.
    You are a horrible person and a president.
    Please quit before you destroy our country, Please.

    2010/2012 REAL Change is coming

    February 3, 2010 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  11. mhhsfren

    What about the democrats refusals to vote on a Supreme Court justice until they were sure that he/she would be a democrat? Is that political obstruction?
    Anytime the democrats refuse or do not participate, it is quite all right. But when the republicans do it, it is unacceptable.
    I AM PROUD OF THE STANCE THE REPUBLICANS ARE TAKING. I wish they would stand all the time against the democrats, not just only sometimes.
    And yes, we are still celebrating the fact that Scott Brown won Massachusetts!
    I miss George!

    February 3, 2010 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  12. Felly

    The Party of no is making a fool of themselves. These bunch of GOPs are not patriotic. Politics first and country last.

    February 3, 2010 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  13. tabeth

    With a President like Obama
    All americans should be happy!

    February 3, 2010 10:52 am at 10:52 am |
  14. Peggy - TX

    Bravo President Barack Obama. Just telling it like it is!!! The people are looking to you for leadership and you continue to have more credibility then every member of the House and Senate combined despite the, well funded, unfair relentless attacks from the right.

    February 3, 2010 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  15. Obamalot

    Don't even try...Dems have not exttended a hand, they turned their backs because they had the super-majorities in Congress and thought they could do whatever they wanted (and still can). Now that people are starting to see what the 'change' actually is they voted in power, they are having second thoughts and dems are scared of this next election cycle. Obama can't even unify his own party. He is a sad and dangerous joke on this country.

    February 3, 2010 10:53 am at 10:53 am |
  16. Brian

    I am always pained when I hear a sweeping generalization paint a group. But in the case of the Republican Party since the GW Bush years, the party does act as a single entity. So the irony is dripping when Republican leadership states that the Democrats are trying to force an agenda through the 60 vote majority. In truth, the Republican Party is stonewalling with their 41 vote filibuster ability. It seems highly unlikely that not a single Republican Senator represents a State that could benefit from Heath Care reform. Not one?

    For a group that so frequently references the 'founding fathers', they sure spend little time concentrating on the principles held so dearly by that group.

    February 3, 2010 10:55 am at 10:55 am |
  17. Rick McDaniel

    Gee......and this is coming from the guy who claimed he was going to get bipartisanship in Congress.

    Looks like he wasn't too convincing in Congress. That might be, because the Congress knows BS when they hear it.

    February 3, 2010 10:56 am at 10:56 am |
  18. If you want something ruined, put a republican in charge

    Republicans continue to screw over the country, which continues to prove how screwed up they really are. The only time they should have said "No!" was to prevent their sex scandals, and not say "No!" to the American people.

    February 3, 2010 10:57 am at 10:57 am |
  19. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    I love this president! You need to agree with me or you are obstructing! If that is the case then why do we need the senate and congress? Just let Obama tell us what is going to happen.


    February 3, 2010 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  20. Right Leaning Independent

    What Republican ideas on health care and other issues did Dems embrace?? I support the Repubs using the filibuster so much as they have to stop this liberal big spending redistribution agenda!! We like America the way it is with all of its warts. We do not want a European style America! Call them out all you want Obama, we are voting you all out ASAP you arrogant Hypocrite!!!

    February 3, 2010 10:58 am at 10:58 am |
  21. Ethan

    GOOD. Keep at it Obama! We NEED you to lead both the House and Senate AND the entire electorate. We NEED governance! KEEP AT IT PRESIDENT OBAMA!

    February 3, 2010 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  22. If you want something ruined, put a republican in charge

    Fox spies and lies has to also take some blame, as most conservatives are not bright enough to wage a war against the American people. Imagine how much better we would be without the guidance of the foreign billionaire who is intent on destroying our country.

    February 3, 2010 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  23. Anonymous

    Once again, he misstated the facts! His is the obstructionist, not the GOP!

    February 3, 2010 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  24. Dominican mama 4 Obama

    Call them out Mr. President, please continue to call them out. The people of this country hold you in high regard, and respect you. It has become incumbent, facing the deafening, cowardly silence of the Democraps in congress, for YOU to be the voice of the Democratic Party, the USA, and the voice of reason. NO ONE ELSE IS WILLING OR APPARENTLY ABLE to call these politicians out from BOTH sides of the aisle, but especially the no-go GOP. You can continue to pass programs, stimuli, legislation all geared towards getting the country off of it's knees and to no avail because those that are there to make sure that said things are implemented, adhered to and monitored are NOT BACKING YOU UP because of their own political agendas.

    I'm sick and tired of seeing good efforts and ideas getting shot down for no reason other than private agendas that have NOTHING to do with what's good and right for the country.

    February 3, 2010 11:03 am at 11:03 am |
  25. Eric

    It's difficult to understand what the GOP's long-term strategy is. Obama is going to be in office at least 3 more years and the Democrats will likely have the majority after 2010. At what point are they going to actually try to govern?

    February 3, 2010 11:05 am at 11:05 am |
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