Tags: reagan | chief | staff | baker | shutdown

Reagan's Chief of Staff: To End Shutdown Obama Must Lead

Image: Reagan's Chief of Staff: To End Shutdown Obama Must Lead

Friday, 04 Oct 2013 10:47 AM

By Lisa Furgison

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
|  A   A  
  Copy Shortlink
Political gridlock over Obamacare is not the real cause of the federal government shutdown, it's the president's lack of leadership, Ronald Reagan's chief of staff James Baker says.

"It's a failure of leadership to say, 'I'm just gonna sit here while the government remains closed,' or, with respect to the debt limit, 'I'll sit here and not negotiate and the catastrophic consequences I warned you of will just have to happen,'" Baker tells Wall Street Journal columnist Peggy Noonan.

Baker, who was secretary of state, secretary of Treasury and White House chief of staff under Reagan and George H.W. Bush was in office for eight of the 17 government shutdowns that have occurred since 1976.

He says the only way for Obama to turn things around is to pick up the phone, call House Speaker John Boehner and "start resolving" the problem.

"When a president doesn't control both sides of Congress he has to deal with the other party," Baker tells Noonan. "Resolve this thing by getting into a room and making the government work. The leader of our government should be willing to get into a room and sit down with the opposition."

Baker says negotiation is the key to politics, something he learned while watching Reagan battle a Democratic house throughout both terms of his presidency.

"Those days were bitter, but we got into a room and we thrashed it out," he said. "We worked it out, each side gave a little, and we got the government working."

Baker isn't the only Republican who believes Obama's lackluster leadership abilities are key: both New Jersey Governor Chris Christie  and Republican Strategist Karl Rove  have said the same.

While Baker says lack of leadership is the crux of Washington's problems, he says his own party isn't in the clear.

"I don't think it was a very wise strategy for we Republicans to say we would not fund the government unless we defunded Obamacare," he said. "I don't think that's a smart political strategy, and I think we'll pay a price for it. . . . If you're gonna make your stand, make your stand on something you can accomplish."

Still, Baker believes a compromise can be reached. "You can't lead through obstinacy and political calculation," he said. Reagan did what was needed to get the job done, he added, that's what needs to happen now.

Related Stories:

Chris Matthews: Obama Is Missing Key Leadership Skills
WSJ: Obama Wants Government Shutdown to Salvage Legacy



© 2014 Newsmax. All rights reserved.

Share:
  Comment  |
   Contact Us  |
  Print  
  Copy Shortlink
Around the Web
Join the Newsmax Community
Please review Community Guidelines before posting a comment.
>> Register to share your comments with the community.
>> Login if you are already a member.
blog comments powered by Disqus
 
Email:
Country
Zip Code:
Privacy: We never share your email.
 
Hot Topics
Follow Newsmax
Like us
on Facebook
Follow us
on Twitter
Add us
on Google Plus
Around the Web
Top Stories
You May Also Like

Latinos May Turn Backs on Democrats in Midterms

Tuesday, 21 Oct 2014 09:04 AM

Embattled Democrats are facing a fierce voter backlash on Election Day from disillusioned Latinos, the Los Angeles Times . . .

Poll: Support Tilting to McConnell in Tight Ky Senate Race

Tuesday, 21 Oct 2014 08:28 AM

With just two weeks until Election Day, Kentucky Sen. Mitch McConnell has regained a slim 1-point lead over his Democrat . . .

Canada Police Kill 'Radicalized' Driver Who Ran Over Soldiers

Tuesday, 21 Oct 2014 08:20 AM

A Canadian man who was killed by police on Monday after trying to run over two soldiers in Quebec had become radicalize . . .

Most Commented

Newsmax, Moneynews, Newsmax Health, and Independent. American. are registered trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc. Newsmax TV, and Newsmax World are trademarks of Newsmax Media, Inc.

 
NEWSMAX.COM
America's News Page
©  Newsmax Media, Inc.
All Rights Reserved