“One of the main reasons we ought to re-elect President Obama,” President Bill Clinton said last night, “is that he is still committed to constructive cooperation.” But excerpts from Bob Woodward’s latest book, Price of Politics, shows that that is just not true.
ABC News reports:
His administration’s early decision to forego bipartisanship for the sake of speed around the stimulus bill was encapsulated by his then-chief of staff, Rahm Emanuel: “We have the votes. F— ‘em,” he’s quoted in the book as saying.
The Daily Beast reports:
In Obama’s first meeting with Democratic and Republican House and Senate leaders, just two weeks after his inauguration, he told the group that he wanted to hear everyone’s ideas and come to a bipartisan solution—words he had run his presidential platform on. He told those assembled, “If it works, we don’t care whose idea it is.” But the next day his tune changed when Rep. Eric Cantor, then House minority whip, passed out a draft of a potential economic recovery plan that essentially met only the Republican demands. After reading the one-page spread, the president responded: “I can go it alone but I want to come together. Look at the polls. The polls are pretty good for me right now.” He then told Cantor, “Elections have consequences and Eric, I won.” The president’s arrogance is described many times in the book as having a negative effect.