What kind of way is this to talk about the leaders of Congress?
I want them here at 11 a.m. tomorrow . . . and they are going to have to explain to me how it is that we are going to avoid default . . . They will come down here at 11 oclock tomorrow. I expect them to have answers.
Even if you’re angry, Mr. President, as you were when you appeared in the briefing room last night to announce the deficit talks had fallen apart, this is not how you speak about the other branch of government.
Now, I can talk about Congress however I want. I’m employing them. And they often suck.
But we have co-equal branches of government in this country. So it’s frankly of great concern when one branch talks about the other as if it’s his house help.
Now I understand what you’re doing. You’re trying to portray yourself as the adult who is beset by all these schoolchildren. You’re employing a political strategy of suggesting you’re above politics, a political posture that says you’re not posturing politically
And the American people I think are fed up with political posturing and an inability for politicians to take responsible action as opposed to dodge their responsibilities . . . I mean, the American people are just desperate for folks who are willing to put aside politics just for a minute and try to get some stuff done.
This, even though you spent the spring raising eighty gazzillion dollars or whatever amount it was, and took no responsible action on the deficit until Republicans forced your hand by threatening not to raise the debt ceiling.
I’ve never heard such condescension before. It’s different than the blame game you and the Republicans will now begin playing with each other. It shows, after being an inattentive senator for four years and president for only two and a half years, that you find yourself elevated above everyone else.
You speak often about how Ronald Reagan and Speaker Tip O’Neill had a great relationship and got things done. It’s not quite correct. But if you’re going to use them as a model, ask yourself, can you hear Reagan ordering O’Neill into his office?
Go ahead, knock heads among your staff. But Congress is not your staff.