Standing in Obama’s way is a Congress that remains nearly as divided as it was during the final years of his first term, when Washington lurched from one budget emergency to another.
The president implored lawmakers to break through partisan logjams, asserting, “The greatest nation on Earth cannot keep conducting its business by drifting from one manufactured crisis to the next.”
“Americans don’t expect government to solve every problem,” he said. “They do expect us to forge reasonable compromise where we can.”
Yet Obama offered few signs of being willing to compromise himself, instead doubling down on his calls to create jobs by spending more government money and insisting that lawmakers pay down the deficit through a combination of tax increases as well as targeted spending cuts.