Obama as Truman: 'Give 'em hell, Barry'?
September 9th, 2011
10:45 AM ET
11 years ago

Obama as Truman: 'Give 'em hell, Barry'?

Washington (CNN) - In a passionate speech before a joint session of Congress, President Barack Obama issued a stern warning to Republicans: Compromise or I'll use it against you.

Obama appears to have channeled Harry Truman, who went after what he called the Republican-controlled "do-nothing" 80th Congress in his 1948 presidential re-election campaign, traveling across the country by train, giving speeches to crowds in small towns and big cities.

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Filed under: Congress • Economy • Jobs • President Obama • Republicans
soundoff (16 Responses)
  1. FM

    We all teach people how to treat us. GOP asked from the President what they should get from him. Take it my fellow citizen and we all expect no argument, blames from you!

    September 9, 2011 10:51 am at 10:51 am |
  2. John K.

    I read Maureen Dowd's column in the New York Times last weekend where she eviscerated 0bama. Now I read Democrats are scrambling to try to save Anthony Weiner's old seat. This is very reminiscent of the downhill slide that Jimmy Carter experienced from 1979-1980. My instincts tell me that 0bama is facing the real possibility of losing the 2012 election by landslide margins.

    September 9, 2011 11:00 am at 11:00 am |
  3. Lucullus NYC

    Oh please Mr. Obama isn't even "give'm heck". A lot of people bought into his campaign rethoric only to discover that they were only words. He has no spine and nothing between his legs. He's a timid bunny afraid that the jack boot right won't like him but he keeps trying to appease them anyway. What an embarrassment, he makes Neville Chamberlin look decisive and strong. We wanted FDR and got WTF instead.

    September 9, 2011 11:02 am at 11:02 am |
  4. sonny chapman

    In a democracy/representative from of govt., political pressure of losing one's job is the ultimate weapon.

    September 9, 2011 11:09 am at 11:09 am |
  5. Liberals are Losers

    Obama is just interested in reelection
    He's no Harry Truman
    Maybe Carter or worst

    September 9, 2011 11:11 am at 11:11 am |
  6. Pete

    Truman said the Buck stops Here
    Obama say's its Bushes Fault

    September 9, 2011 11:13 am at 11:13 am |
  7. Four and The Door

    "You should pass it (his American Jobs Act economic plan). And I intend to take that message to every corner of this country," Obama said Thursday night.
    Here's a message from the bottom left corner of the country. Stop the wasteful spending! The debt is already too high. It's time to bring it down, not up. America's future is more important than your desperate campaign ambitions. Congress knows we sent them there to get spending in control. This plan will not add jobs. It will just drive our downgraded debt up even more.

    September 9, 2011 11:28 am at 11:28 am |
  8. Greg in Arkansas

    Republicans have the ball in their court.....they wish they could hold the "ball" and run out the clock until the next election... BUT Obama called them out and they are about to get a "delay of the game" penalty from the voters. We can't afford to wait 14 months to get more tax cuts for the rich GOP pals in the hopes of creating new jobs in THIS country.

    September 9, 2011 11:35 am at 11:35 am |
  9. Woman In California

    For all Truman's faults (especially his thoughts growing up in the south) I actually rank him among one the best presidents we ever had. With his tough no nonsense approach – he was able to get things done and he didn't mind letting anyone know he was in charge. Honestly, I wish Obama would take his leadership approach but keep to his own style and eloquence.

    September 9, 2011 11:37 am at 11:37 am |
  10. Rudy NYC

    The real punch in the gut was when he challenged the Congress to extend the payroll tax cuts, which Republicans have opposed. President Obama called them out on the pledges they signed to *not ever raise taxes*, and to "not raise taxes on the middle class." Talk about shock and awe. The Republicans were shocked into silence, and the Democrats so awed by his audicity that they gave him the strongest standing "O", yet.

    September 9, 2011 11:38 am at 11:38 am |
  11. Ed Texas

    Obama and Truman have a lot in common. Both have had to fight a "do nothing" republican controlled congress. If I'm not mistaken it was Dubya Bush and the republicans who imposed all of the tax cuts on the rich and pushed for the war in Iraq which has cost over a trillion dollars. It was Bush and the republicans who deregulated the banks to the point where we had the lending melt down that led to the worst recession since the Great Depression. Thank God for Obama! He is thinking about what is right for this country and not just a select chosen few like the repubs. Give em Hell Obama!!!

    September 9, 2011 11:43 am at 11:43 am |
  12. Duck Fallas

    I can't comment until Rush tells me what to think.

    (The worse than Carter talking point is getting stale.)

    September 9, 2011 11:52 am at 11:52 am |
  13. John, PA

    Obama as Truman, you are correct, they will both be former presidents reaally soon.

    September 9, 2011 12:03 pm at 12:03 pm |
  14. Lou

    Obama has gotten everything he has wanted thus far with exception to cap and tax and uinion card check and both would have damaged growth and jobs. Obama has refused to compromise on most issues to his detriment. Everyone in the country from both parties jobs and growth but Obama is going to have to be flexible – thats how democracy works. Personally I do not see any results in this Presidency thus far that resembles anything but mediocrity.

    September 9, 2011 12:05 pm at 12:05 pm |
  15. Rudy NYC

    Four and the Door wrote:
    Stop the wasteful spending! The debt is already too high. It's time to bring it down, not up. America's future is more important than your desperate campaign ambitions. Congress knows we sent them there to get spending in control. This plan will not add jobs.
    Economics 101: Economic growth is driven by demand for products, which means spending, which creates demand, which creates jobs to meet the demand.

    In other words, there are three major buyers of products; consumers, businesses, and government. A thriving economy sees spending from all of those groups. Right now, consumers and businesses have slowed spending and are paying down their debts, which has stagnated the economic recovery. Dramatically cutting spending by the lone client who is still spending will send the entire economy into a nosedive.

    The biggest uncertainty in the economy is what goober move will the Republicans pull next.

    September 9, 2011 12:15 pm at 12:15 pm |
  16. terry,va

    The problem with Obummie making this arguement is that he had total control of government for 2 years out of 2 and 1/2. He passed all his failed policies and wants to go back to more of the same. Sorry, Obummie you had your chance and you failed. The Repubs are the only thing from keeping you from destroying this country. Trying to blame your ignorance and failed policies on the Repubs won't work. Obummie you are one and done and will be recorded in history as Jimmy Carter the second.

    September 9, 2011 12:16 pm at 12:16 pm |