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.

Full story

Filed under: Democrats • GOP • Popular Posts • President Obama • Senate
soundoff (241 Responses)
  1. billy123

    Iti is about time because the Republicans have been playing the Dems like fools: I do not understand why President Obama could think the Republicans would help this country since the Republicans was the party who put us in this mess.

    February 3, 2010 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  2. Eden

    Republicans love failure and scare tactics. We, as Americans, can be easily fooled. Shame on us, we'll get what we justly deserve if we continue to fall for every Republican tactic they throw at us. We seem to gobble up every lie they put out there for us. Shame on us!!!

    February 3, 2010 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  3. Preston kk

    Pkm mr obama get tough with your own party

    February 3, 2010 11:49 am at 11:49 am |
  4. john in binghamton NY

    When will people hold the GOP responsible? They don't have to bend over, they do have to be reasonable and participate. The health care bill was weak and full of buy outs because the GOP refused to work with the dems unless they got 100% of what they wanted and 0% of what the dems. They basically oppose anything they didn't come up with first and oppose anything the dems are for even if it something the GOP would normally agree with.

    February 3, 2010 11:50 am at 11:50 am |
  5. ROGER

    I'm glad the president is willing to push back and call it like it is. As a citizen, i am outraged at the lack of response, by fellow citizens, to the political climate in Washlngton. There has been a virtual political kidnap of gov't, and we're all being held hostage by the back and forth rhetoric of the negotiators we elected to rescue us from crisis. Thank u, Mr. President.

    February 3, 2010 11:51 am at 11:51 am |
  6. sharon

    GOP= Gone on Purpose...........party of the big NO.

    After all , it is an easy reply. There is NO need to think.
    No need to plan. NO need to work. Just NO.

    I wonder if they will get upset when it is their turn to recieve the NO

    this could happen.

    February 3, 2010 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  7. Brian

    Let's make the rich richer....Vote Republican!!!!

    February 3, 2010 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  8. notfooledbydistractions

    Very true. They're not obstructing on principle – they're obstructing to score cheap political points while the rest of us pay the price.

    It'll be a cold day before I vote for a republican again. They overplayed their hand and are too cute by half.

    February 3, 2010 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  9. sonny chapman

    Sen. Jim DeMint's "we will make Health Care Obama's Waterloo" is the smoking gun.

    February 3, 2010 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  10. www.firedoglake.com

    But who will call out the corporatist Democrats who ruined health care reform?


    February 3, 2010 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  11. If Obama found a cure for Cancer . . .

    The Republics would yell that he's putting oncologists out of business.

    February 3, 2010 11:54 am at 11:54 am |
  12. Liberal wing nut

    Obama is an obstructionist to the constitution!

    February 3, 2010 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  13. Pat F

    What a consensus builder – what a bi-partisan guy!

    Sorry, Barry. Maybe Nancy Pelosi has trained you to "go along to get along." But the GOP is trying to do what's best for the country – and blindly nodding yes to you like your kool-aid drinkers do is NOT best for the country.

    Just ask the voters in Massachusetts, VA, NJ....

    February 3, 2010 11:55 am at 11:55 am |
  14. Tom C

    Mr. President, you cannot trust these people. They are still seething at losing everything. They are looking for revenge and that is it. They had their glory years in the 00's and blew it. Their ways did not work before and if they get in power, they will not work today.

    February 3, 2010 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  15. Pittsburgh voter

    Excuse me Mr. President.- you have a majority in both houses of Congress. The Republicans CAN'T obstruct anything. It seems that you are trying to shift the blame for the failings of this Democrat administration and Congress on to a group that simply can't stop you or your agenda. Most American's aren't buying your flawed argument.

    February 3, 2010 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  16. davis harbour oregon's water is poisoned

    your ideas suck obama. why should we agree to them? your done.

    February 3, 2010 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  17. haren

    It is corporation of real estate developer who pressured Michael Bloomberg to oppose trial of KSM in New York.
    Republican and Rich people can sell their soul for money.
    we need to defeat Blanche lincoln, Joe lieberman, Ben Nelson and all blue dogs. We don't need them in democratic party.
    Did we ever see any repubican standing in front of democrats.
    If we don't trust our judicial system than we don't have right to lecture Iran, or North Korea and other country of the world.

    February 3, 2010 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  18. Dale

    Yes,,,, They are an obstruction "THANK GOD"

    Apparently he's still not hearing what the PEOPLE are saying. We are all against most of the presidents agenda.

    Scrap HC and start over from scratch.

    But he better worry more about jobs and the economy right now. And not with just taxpayer money.

    February 3, 2010 11:57 am at 11:57 am |
  19. Preston kk

    Pkm mr obama get tough with your own party the gop are like snakes they sneck behind your back and strick

    February 3, 2010 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  20. Clint

    Keep calling them out. The GOP cannot continue to have it both ways by refusing to constructively participate in the legislative process and then telling the American people that the President has failed in leading the country. The majority of American voters voted for change and now the minority of its elected members of Congress are obstructing that change,for their own political and economic gain. The American public is basically ignorant, but not stupid,so the GOP should be very wary of their tactics backfiring at the polls this fall.

    February 3, 2010 11:58 am at 11:58 am |
  21. Tim E

    It's about time President Obama began channeling Harry Truman. The Republicans may know how to throw a Tea Party, but the President just trashed their RSVP.

    February 3, 2010 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  22. demmie2

    sorry Mr. President but when your party is trying to push through unpopular legislation someone has to stand up to it. We're sorry that our political system and those pesky procedural rules are getting in the way of your takeover...

    February 3, 2010 11:59 am at 11:59 am |
  23. STEVE

    When a Presidents policies are so far to one side, it is hard for the majority of the other party to agree with anything. We are looking at what I refer to as "PASS AND CHANGE" politics. Get anything passed and then change it to our liking later. Listen yo the American people, we are not Stupid!

    February 3, 2010 12:00 pm at 12:00 pm |
  24. Alan

    This guy is speaking to the masses that do not follow the news. Anyone that is informed, knows that the Repubs have not been included in talks on health care, budgets, etc. Another Obama lie.

    Example: Someone says that they are going to steal your car and it is your choice how they do it: Breaking your window or you handing over your keys. You choose neither because you do not want your car stolen and then the thieves (Dems) accuse you of not wanting to comprimise!!!

    Come on America wake up to the lies and propaganda. Obama is just trying to save a few seats at all cost!!

    February 3, 2010 12:01 pm at 12:01 pm |
  25. t22

    So he had one meeting with the Republicans and within days is out saying it's all their fault. Nice bipartisanship. But if the country is going to go bankrupt with more spending, less jobs and redistributing what wealth is left, we should be happy there's someone trying to slow down this mess.

    February 3, 2010 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
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