Obama says biggest task left for him is to fix U.S. politics

November 8, 2011

President Barack Obama has lots of reasons he wants to hold on to the White House in 2012.

There’s energy policy, for example, which he would like to revamp. There’s immigration reform, which he hopes to “implement.”

But at a fundraiser on Monday night, the president said the real challenge he had left to handle was “fixing” the political atmosphere in Washington.

“The challenge we have now is fixing our politics,” Obama said at fundraiser held at a private home in Washington.

“That is probably the biggest piece of business that remains unfinished. That’s probably the area where we’ve been most stymied over the last three years.”

In 2008 one of Obama’s campaign promises was to bring a greater spirit of bipartisanship to the capital. Both Republicans and Democrats would likely agree that that has not happened.

Whether a second Obama term would change that is hard to say. But the president is raising money to help advance his cause.

Monday’s fundraiser was held at the home of Obama supporters Antoinette and Dwight Bush. Some 45 people attended, paying entrance fees that started at $17,900 a head.

Photo Credit: REUTERS/Kevin Lamarque (Obama walks into the Rose Garden of the White House


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It’s ironic that Obama announced this at a fundraiser since the primary problem that needs to be fixed is the way fundraising drives everything that happens in our political system. Solving that problem would go a long ways to solving all the other problems.

Posted by TruBluDem | Report as abusive

“In 2008 one of Obama’s campaign promises was to bring a greater spirit of bipartisanship to the capital. Both Republicans and Democrats would likely agree that that has not happened.”

Indeed, this is Obama’s greatest of many failures, and one of the biggest reasons why I will not support him in 2012.

Posted by Sensibility | Report as abusive

I personally think that Obama did bring a “greater spirit of bipartisanship to the capital”, at least up until the debt limit crisis in July 2011. The Tea Party-elected Republicans showed that they were not willing to compromise, that is to meet Obama halfway with his attempt to increase bipartisanship in Congress. Obama’s return to left-wing populism and “class warfare” was, I believe, a natural response to what the Republicans had done in the beginning of 2011. Obama is not the root cause of Congressional deadlock, and has, I believe, done much to alleviate it, until he saw that there was no quid pro quo from the Republicans.

Therefore, I will support Obama in 2012.

Posted by Alfredywong | Report as abusive

I would say calling Republicans your enemy is not a good way to bring a greater spirit of bipartisanship to the capital. Or constantly blaming them for everything wrong in the country.

Posted by UnPartisan | Report as abusive

Mr President, when you gained office you held both houses of congress. You rammed down a health care bill that in the most infamous political words ever spoken by a leader of Congress – “We have to pass it before we will know what is in it”. You got your political capital and you spent our real capital by bailing out your best political allies on Wall Street and then promoted unsound solar energy policies with real money that amounts to less than 2% of our energy needs. Your hope and change was you hoped people would buy your lies and you would change your world into a millionaires dream. Sounds great to the masses to say your doing something about being bi-partisan yet in reality do nothing of the sort. When a relationship fails it is obvious. There is nothing more that the educated populace desires more than your vacating the White House and returning to making million by writing books rather than cooking them.

Posted by NeverSurrender | Report as abusive

The man is a consummate liar. No president in history has done
more DELIBERATELY to create divisions in the country. The problem
with politics in D.C. is a president whose only path to reelection is
to blame others for his failed agenda. How dumb does a person
have to be to believe that after already increasing the national
debt by $4.5 trillion that giving this man another $$half a trillion
will create jobs?? He is clueless economically, petty and
mean spirited. But worst of all the press has consistently covered
up his lies. The country can not afford 4 more minutes of Obama
much less 4 more years.

Posted by giatny | Report as abusive

Obama has reached out to the Republicans much more so than Bush ever did. How do you create a spirit of bi-partisanship when the Republicans stated from the outset that their #1 goal was to make sure Obama was a one term president? Much of what Obama has proffered had been put forth by Republicans at some point in the past, but the Republicans have a policy to oppose anything and everything Obama does, regardless of how that opposition adversely affects the nation. There’s not much Obama or anyone else can do to bring about a spirit of bi-partisanship to Washington and the nation. The right flat out rejects such an arrangement. How do you force the right to work with the left when opposing the left at every opportunity is ingrained in rightwing ideology? That’s not a failure on Obama’s part. It’s a failure on the part of Republicans and their responsibility to our Republic.

Obama would do better focusing on getting the money out of our political system. And he certainly won’t get any help from Republicans on that.

Posted by doggydaddy | Report as abusive

Several polls this week find that Americans nationwide agree that President Obama is making a good faith effort to deal with the country’s economic problems, but the Republicans in Congress are playing politics by blocking his proposals.

The polls come at the same time as a New York Times article that stated, simply as an obvious fact, that congressional Republicans are committed to doing nothing to improve the economy in the hopes that the faltering economy will cost President Obama his job in 2012.

Posted by SteveoOOo | Report as abusive

The Republicans have one policy-say no to Obama.

Posted by gobucks | Report as abusive

Obama could start by adopting a multi-dimensional strategy instead of a singular-dimensional strategy. His current strategy goes like this:

1) Be sworn into office
2) Immediately increase deficit spending by $1.2 trillion per year
3) Immediately pass multiple bills which were contrived and supported by less than 1/2 of the American people
4) Start bad-mouthing bankers and businesses who are actually successful
5) Start funneling more and more money to failed businesses

6) Blame the Republicans for all of the above woes because they won’t “compromise” and ask “the millionaires and billionaires” (who only make $250k a year) to pay an even higher percentage of the total federal revenues.

Once we return to levels of spending *below* 2008, then perhaps we can talk about tax rates *above* 2008.

I voted for Obama in 2008, but I will vote for Mickey Mouse before I see him in office again.

Posted by JaredWhite | Report as abusive

I’m sure he does want to “fix” politics. In his favor, I imagine. Just hope he doesn’t do it the way he “fixed” the economy and health care…ugh.

Posted by moshcustom | Report as abusive

Well that’ll have to go unfixed cause he’s the problem folks! Seems like a nice enough guy/family, but he’s a divider, not a uniter- because he’s too far left! Well done is better than well said-next!

Posted by DrJJJJ | Report as abusive

All of Europe now agrees that big government (unsustainable, etc) is their problem, but Obama thinks just the opposite regarding US economics-bigger government is the answer!

Posted by DrJJJJ | Report as abusive

I really don’t believe our country can afford any more of Obama’s fixes. Actually, we can’t afford his past, present, or future fixes.

Posted by niblick3 | Report as abusive

We sure as hell can’t afford any of the GOP’s fixes. Everything they want to enact raises the deficit, increases unemployment, and shrinks the economy.

Posted by Yellow105 | Report as abusive