Tags: washington | gridlock | race

Obama: Washington Gridlock Not About My Race

By    |   Wednesday, 28 Aug 2013 11:17 PM

President Obama said he believes the partisan gridlock in the House and Senate was caused not by the fact that he is the country’s first African-American president, but rather by a Republican “habit” of attempting to “delegitimize” Democratic presidents, reports the Hill.

During an interview on the PBS NewsHour, Wednesday, Obama pointed out that earlier in the day, he and President Clinton had shared a stage at the 50th anniversary of the March on Washington and recalled “him having a pretty hard time with the Republicans as well.”

“There does [seem to] be a habit sometimes of just Democratic presidents generally being – efforts being made to delegitimize them in some fashion,” Obama said.

"And that’s fine because, you know, politics is – is not – is not  abean bag, as they used to say – it’s not a non-contact sport. And I don’t worry about it personally."

Obama said one of the biggest roadblocks was, in his opinion, a resistance to “any change in the status quo, particularly when it came to economic opportunity.”

He put the blame for that “less to ... my race” than sentiments that “the government’s the problem instead of the solution.”

“I think it – it doesn’t have to do with my race in particular; it has to do with an effort to make sure people who might otherwise challenge the existing ways that things work are divided,” Obama said.

The president admitted a major thorn in his side was the fact that his economic policies haven't done more to address inequity.

“It certainly weighs on me,” Obama said, also noting that key aspects of his agenda had “met resistance from the Republicans in Congress.”

Another point troubling Obama was growing economic disparity.

He called it "a trend that’s actually been going on for a couple of decades now."

“So what we need to do is to go back to that principle that, if you look at our economic history, has always been the case,” Obama said.

“When we have broad-based growth, when the middle class does well, when people at the bottom have a shot, it turns out that’s good for everybody. It’s good for folks at the top. It’s good for businesses, because now they’ve got consumers who are spending more money."

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President Obama said he believes the partisan gridlock in the House and Senate was caused not by the fact that he is the country's first African-American president, but rather by a Republican "habit" of attempting to "delegitimize" Democratic presidents, reports the...
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Wednesday, 28 Aug 2013 11:17 PM
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