He’s a uniter.
Obama’s ripped Republicans during his “fiscal cliff” speech today for not agreeing to raise taxes. He praised himself for his “responsible” approach. At one point in his speech he bragged about how he got Republicans to agree to raise taxes on wealthy Americans.
His supporters cheered.
His speech left several Republicans angry and confused.
Huffington Post reported:
With hours remaining to avert the so-called fiscal cliff, President Barack Obama said a deal is “within sight” and urged lawmakers to come together to avert automatic tax hikes and spending cuts that kick in on Tuesday.
But his midday press conference, with a group of middle-class Americans looking on, was not without a bit of bravado as well. Obama took multiple shots at Congress for its clumsiness in negotiations and insisted that he’d demand more tax hikes if the legislative body used the impending debt ceiling standoff to demand spending cuts.
In the process, the president irked several Republican aides, who suggested that the entire fiscal cliff deal had been complicated because of his tone and criticism.
“Potus just moved the goalpost again. Significantly. This is new,” tweeted a top aide to McConnell.
Doug Heye, a spokesman for House Majority Whip Eric Cantor (R-Va.), tweeted, “If Obama’s goal was to harm the process and make going over the cliff more likely, he’s succeeding.” Another Cantor spokesperson said, “So….I’m confused….does POTUS want a deal or not? Because all those jabs at Congress certainly sounded like a smack in the face to me.
Sen. John McCain (R-Ariz.) said the president “sent a message of confrontation” to Republicans, who could be voting on a deal in the next 24 hours. “I’m not sure … whether to be angry or to be saddened,” he added.
A source close to House Republican leadership went even further, telling HuffPost that the lower chamber was in revolt over Obama’s remarks and that the deal could blow up because of them.
UPDATE: The US House will not hold a vote on a fiscal cliff deal tonight.