President Barack Obama will work with Congress where he can and circumvent lawmakers where he must, his top advisers warned Sunday in previewing Tuesday’s State of the Union speech.
Obama faces a politically divided Congress on Tuesday and will use his annual address to demand expanded economic opportunity. Absent legislative action, the White House is telling lawmakers that the president is ready to take unilateral action to close the gap between rich and poor Americans.
“I think the way we have to think about this year is we have a divided government,” said Dan Pfeiffer, a longtime Obama adviser. “The Republican Congress is not going to rubber-stamp the president’s agenda. The president is not going to sign the Republican Congress’ agenda.”
So the White House is eyeing compromise on some priorities, Obama advisers said. But the president is also looking at executive orders that can be enacted without Congress’ approval.
“The president sees this as a year of action to work with Congress where he can and to bypass Congress where necessary,” White House press secretary Jay Carney said.
The White House has been signaling to Republicans that it would not wait for Congress to act. It also is betting Obama’s backers will rally behind his plans.
“When American jobs and livelihoods depend on getting something done, he will not wait for Congress,” Pfeiffer wrote in an email to Obama supporters Saturday.
And how fascistic/monarchistic does it sound that they think their ‘solutions’ are the only answer, and will ‘guarantee’ things will get better in America economically and – because of that – they’ll just circumvent the “impediment” that they view Congress as wherever they see fit in order to implement those “solutions”?
Let’s pretend for five seconds had President Bush even seriously hinted at doing something like this, especially over a sustained period of time – imagine the outrage both from the Usual Suspects on the left both in Congress and in the media. You know who’d be the loudest protesting? Then-Senator Barack Obama, who as a Senator frequently complained about what he perceived as “executive branch overreach.”
That was then. This is now.
“Change” you can believe in!