Republicans sought to capitalize today on some Democrats’ not exactly embracing the president’s jobs plan with both arms, as the White House and Republicans on Capitol Hill battle not only to pass a jobs bill but also to win the larger message war.
Sen. John Cornyn, R-Texas, had a little fun turning the president’s words around on him.
“Yesterday, you heard the president, as I did, tell someone in the audience that, ‘If you love me, you will pass this bill,’” Cornyn said at a news conference this afternoon. “Well, it’s pretty clear that even Democrats, members of his own party, have lost that loving feeling for the president and his agenda.”
White House advisers David Plouffe and Gene Sperling are on the Hill briefing Senate Democrats behind closed doors about the president’s job bill, something Republicans also pounced on today.
“One would think they would want to be briefed on details before the president demanded they pass it right away, not after,” Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell, R-Ky., said today. “But, then again, the White House probably expected stronger support from Democrats than it’s gotten so far. After all, this bill’s top selling point, according to the president, was that both parties should like it, yet so far the only thing both parties in Congress seem to agree on is there has got to be a better way than this.”
Many Republicans today echoed, almost mockingly, the president’s repetitive call to “pass this bill.”
“While the president was out in Ohio insisting over and over again that congress pass the bill, it seemed like the only Democrats who were even willing to talk about it here on Capitol Hill were tearing it apart,” McConnell said, noting the many Democrats who have spoken out in recent days critically about the bill’s needing to be broken apart, instead of passed as one bill.
“I know the president and his advisers are keen on this idea of making Republicans look bad, but from what I can tell, he has got a bigger problem at the moment lining up supporters in his own party.”