While Obama gets aggressive on jobs bill, GOP plays nice ... for now
Republican House leaders haven't been slamming President Obama's jobs proposal. But it's not a new political Age of Aquarius. They all face re-election, and voters are fed up with partisanship.
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Obama may be way down in the polls, but Congress is even lower in public opinion. House members all face re-election next year, and they’ve heard loudly and clearly from constituents that unless the partisan fighting and gridlock stops it may be time for voters to send new hired help to Washington.Skip to next paragraph
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The common perception is that both parties are equally at fault. But in recent years at least, that may not be true.
He’s taken eight signal legislative achievements – four each for Obama and former president George W. Bush – and checked the roll call votes in House and Senate.
The bills he chose are (for Bush) the first tax cut, No Child Left Behind, the Iraq War vote, and the 2003 Medicare prescription-drug bill. The four Obama bills are the stimulus, the health-care vote, the Dodd-Frank financial reform, and the “don’t ask, don’t tell” repeal.
“Here’s how it all adds up,” he writes. “Average Democratic Senate support for Bush: 45.5 percent. Average Democratic House support for Bush: 36.8 percent. Average combined Democratic support for Bush: 41.1 percent. Average Republican Senate support for Obama: 8.8 percent. Average Republican House support for Obama: 2.7 percent. Average combined Republican support for Obama: 5.75 percent.”
“Well now,” he concludes. “You see, both sides do do it. It just so happens that one side opposes the major proposals of the president from the other party seven times more intensely than the other side does it.”
So when Republican leaders talk about “finding common ground” and a “desire for bipartisan cooperation,” there’s some recent history to be considered. Which is why Obama is rolling up his sleeves and going straight to the voters.