GOP Blasts Obama for Attending Fundraisers While Debt Talks Continue

Jun 30, 2011 12:47pm

ABC News' Sunlen Miller (@sunlenmiller) reports: 

Not long after Senator Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., invited President Obama to the Hill Thursday to meet with Senate Republicans, Senator John Cornyn, R-Texas, took to the Senate floor to blast President Obama for attending a fundraiser this afternoon in Philadelphia, Penn., when the debt ceiling negotiations are still ongoing.

“I wonder if he's going to cancel his fundraiser in Philadelphia tonight to meet with Senator McConnell and Speaker Boehner to try to work on this threat that he was so emphatic about yesterday. I predict he won't cancel his fundraiser in Philadelphia tonight to get to work on something that only he can do, which is to negotiate a grand bargain with Republicans and Democrats that will solve this problem.”

The White House has not yet responded to McConnell’s invitation, made just over an hour ago.

Cornyn said he was “shocked” that President Obama would tell Congress to get to work on this yesterday.

“I guess the president forgot that his party controls the United States Senate, and Republicans being in the minority have no ability to place matters on the agenda or to force a vote on issues over objection of Senator Reid, the majority leader, and the Democrats who control the senate,” Cornyn said, “the president should have picked up his telephone or invited Senator Reid to come to his office and say, 'Harry, we need to pass a budget. We need to take care of this debt crisis, we need to take care of this cliff that we're getting ready to fall off of.'”

Cornyn called President Obama’s press conference yesterday “outrageous” and said that Obama engaged in “blatant electioneering, campaigning sort of rhetoric.”

He quipped that President Obama has time to make a videotaped fundraising pitch to donors this week but he doesn’t have time to take “ownership” of the debt ceiling issue.

“Frankly, he should be embarrassed, but unfortunately the threshold for embarrassment here in Washington seems to be much higher than the rest of the country.”

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