November 16th, 2010
07:25 PM ET
12 years ago

'Slurpee Summit' postponed

Washington (CNN) - So much for getting things off on a post-election bipartisan note.

President Obama's plan to have a meeting with bipartisan congressional leaders at the White House on Thursday has been postponed. The White House released a statement saying the delay is due to scheduling conflicts and will now take place on November 30th.

But others on Capitol Hill are saying the plan fell apart late Tuesday amid finger-pointing about who's to blame for delaying what had become informally known as the "Slurpee Summit."

Days of scheduling negotiations broke down after Republican leaders Mitch McConnell and John Boehner told the White House the crush of business setting up the new Congress while juggling a lame duck session of the old one was too much, according to officials in both parties.

Republicans insist that Democratic leaders were also having a hard time making Thursday work because of other events. "Thursday was just a tentative date, it was never confirmed," said Don Stewart, a spokesman for Senate Republican Leader Mitch McConnell.

But Democratic officials say they would have made the meeting despite the crowded schedule and they're questioning the GOP commitment to working together. "They can spin it however they want," said one Democratic official. "All I know is that a bipartisan group of the House and Senate leadership were invited to the White House. It doesn't bode well for future cooperation."

Stewart insisted Democrats are blowing the delay out of proportion. He predicted both sides will come together early next week or shortly after Thanksgiving.

"The meeting will happen; the schedulers are working to find the best date/time to make it happen. We'll have a meeting so that we can discuss issues that Republicans have long said can be accomplished together. These include reducing spending, growing jobs through increased trade and increasing domestic energy. The Leader is encouraged that the President wants to discuss these areas of agreement."

President Obama had touted the meeting as an opportunity to have a lengthy discussion with congressional leaders regarding the lame duck congressional session and policy priorities ahead.

The White House released a statement regarding the issue.

"At the request of Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell and House Minority Leader John Boehner due to scheduling conflicts in organizing their caucuses, the President's meeting with bipartisan leaders will now take place at the White House on Tuesday, November 30th," the statement said.

- CNN's Dana Bash, Ted Barrett and Ed Henry contributed to this report.

Filed under: Congress • President Obama
soundoff (15 Responses)
  1. keepstuffingthis

    I hope that the Republicans don't start treating Obama like he treated them during his first 2 years. We all know his ego and liberal philosophy will prevent him from working with the Republicans, but we need to clearly show how out of his depth and element he is as well as how inept and incompetent he is and unfortunately this means showing him the respect and and dignity he and the liberals never showed Republicans. I know he has called us his "enemies," but for the good of the nation, we need to make sure that we are not the stubborn, narcissitic, idealouges he and his administration are. And his supporters are just as bad, if not worse. I would however draw the line at having having Andy Card of the SEIU/ACORN at the meetings, even though Obama cannot make a move without his approval.

    November 16, 2010 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  2. LiberalNN

    Typical Obama arrogance.

    November 16, 2010 07:55 pm at 7:55 pm |
  3. T'sah from Virginia

    "Days of scheduling negotiations broke down after Republican leaders Mitch McConnell and John Boehner told the White House the crush of business setting up the new Congress while juggling a lame duck session of the old one was too much..."


    "But Democratic officials say they would have made the meeting despite the crowded schedule and they're questioning the GOP commitment to working together."

    GRIDLOCK already!!! Whew!!

    45 Days until GOPers take over and the unemployment rate will DROP 1% by the end of January, 2011!!!

    Politicians – GET OUT of Campaign MODE and work on Moving America Forward with our leader, President Obama (he IS still our leader)!!

    November 16, 2010 07:57 pm at 7:57 pm |
  4. Hunter

    I hate Republicans.

    November 16, 2010 08:00 pm at 8:00 pm |
  5. maine liberal

    they cant get a simple slurpee meeting passed. what is going to happen when they try something important.

    November 16, 2010 08:01 pm at 8:01 pm |
  6. kbob

    Why does Obama waste his time on the GOP? They aren't interested in moving America forward, creating jobs, getting the economy moving again, fixing our abysmal health care system, or solving any problem. They are just interested in two things: defeating Obama so they can be back in power (because Bush did such a *great* job for the US economy, NOT) and protecting the wealth and power of their upper class donors. Be a real progressive, Obama, instead of a Rethuglican Light.

    November 16, 2010 08:02 pm at 8:02 pm |
  7. King

    The repugs just can't stop their stalling problems it's like they are doing it uncontiously how the hell you ate going to cancel a meeting on the president of the united states because you have to shorter some rookies around then they bitch about the president don't get any respect from foreign leaders. I guest so Korean they've been watching how you disrespect the president of the united states day in and day out. You don't have to like the individual but you morans better start respecting the position that our forefathers fought so hard to preserve for themselves him Nd many that will follow. When you morans start setting precident that you can treat any one in that office like crap is that fare to the multiple of presidents to come Ater he is gone.

    November 16, 2010 08:07 pm at 8:07 pm |
  8. Dave

    Obama's bi-partisan political summit postponed until he finds bi-partisanship from the GOP. The thing will never happen.

    November 16, 2010 08:12 pm at 8:12 pm |
  9. Jason Glugla

    This should be called Obama's I am going to completely cave on everything my base believed about me summit. After Obama extends his Bush tax breaks for the top 1%, he should just plan his vacation because at that point even Palin will stand a
    fair chance of defeating him.

    November 16, 2010 08:15 pm at 8:15 pm |
  10. JUSTIN

    what part of – they – want his/obama "blank" out of there IN 2012 aka 1600. don't the democrats understand don't they get it?. bipartisan my crock-pot please spare us this foolishness. this is why china is "light years" ahead of the united states now in everything . this gov't is business as usual...... PERIOD. THEY ALL in DC NEED TO BE FLOGGED.

    November 16, 2010 08:20 pm at 8:20 pm |
  11. Ron

    Well...."bipartisan" implies two parties. Clearly, the rethugs have failed to integrate the Tea Party loonies, so they had better not meet with the Pres without a TP representative!! LMAO

    November 16, 2010 08:23 pm at 8:23 pm |
  12. Joe

    Wow, that was close, Republicans! You came within an inch of actually functioning like responsible adults. Whew!!!

    November 16, 2010 08:26 pm at 8:26 pm |
  13. Joe

    I wonder what part of work together to fix the country's problems the republican's don’t get. If the President of the United States set's a time for a meeting YOU make time. It's very disrespectfull

    November 16, 2010 08:31 pm at 8:31 pm |
  14. mike

    so much for cooperation.

    November 16, 2010 08:51 pm at 8:51 pm |
  15. deb

    Here we go again....

    November 16, 2010 08:55 pm at 8:55 pm |