President Obama today said the massacre in Newtown, Connecticut last week should give Republicans a sense of “perspective” that would allow them to abandon what he suggested was an entirely politically-motivated opposition to his proposals for a deal on the fiscal cliff.
“If there’s one thing we should have after this week, it should be a perceptive about what’s important,” Obama said during a White House briefing room press conference that followed his announcement of a White House task force to address gun violence.
Republicans can continue to disagree with Obama and play politics in the future, Obama suggested, but they should recognize that “right now what the country needs is for us to compromise.” Getting past the fiscal cliff would “allow us to focus on things like preventing the tragedy in Newtown from happening again,” Obama said.
Obama also said he remains “eager” to get a fiscal cliff deal done and optimistic that it will occur, but he warned that Republicans are “going to have to go ahead and make some adjustments.”
Obama rejected Speaker Boehner’s “Plan B” to maintain tax cuts for everyone except those with incomes more than $1 million.
The president also reiterated that he will not negotiate any deals in the context of whether or not to raise the debt ceiling.