Relaxed Yet Feisty, Obama Lays Out Second-Term Agenda
Relaxed yet feisty, Obama lays out second-term agenda
WASHINGTON | Wed Nov 14, 2012 7:45pm EST
By Jeff Mason and Mark Felsenthal
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama laid out his second-term agenda on Wednesday, expressing a willingness to work with Republicans in Congress and a resolve to defy them if necessary.
In his first full-scale news conference since March, Obama said he was willing to compromise with Republicans to forge a deal on the nation's debt and taxes to avoid the "fiscal cliff," a combination of budget cuts and tax increases that will kick in next year if such an agreement is not reached.
But he said he would not abandon his campaign pledge to allow Bush-era tax cuts on the top 2 percent of U.S. earners to expire.
He also launched a feisty defense of his United Nations ambassador, Susan Rice, pushing back against two Republican senators who said they would not support her nomination for a Cabinet post because she made misleading statements about the September attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya that killed four Americans.
He is no ideologue. I think that he also was burnt by his first term by both the GOP and the business establishment in that he gave them a lot of what they wanted and then they turned on him anyway. I think a more aggressive approach is on the cards this term and I thank the big pixie in the sky for that! It's nice to hear him using the phrase 'Let's use the best ideas of both parties, Democratic and Republican' less and less. It was almost a given that he was going to cave if he used that phrase.