Axelrod: Republicans Need to Show That They Can Work with This President

Axelrod: Republicans Need to Show That They Can Work with This President

On MSNBC’s “Ronan Farrow Daily” on Wednesday, former top Obama adviser David Axelrod argued that now the Republicans are in the majority of both chambers of Congress on Capitol Hill, the onus was on the GOP to prove to President Barack Obama they would be willing to work with him.

Partial transcript as follows:

Well, some of us were concerned about this election because of the turf on which these races were being fought and the historic pattern that wasn’t in favor of the president. Some of the events leading into the election weren’t helpful as well. Absolutely the president should respond. You have to look forward. The important thing is you see Senator McConnell and I assume Speaker Boehner will do the same, suggesting that they want to work together, and I think the president has to test that proposition and has to be forward leaning in doing so. 

Perhaps he could have been more forward leaning yesterday. Politics is all about when your interest align. It may have been in the interest of the Republican Party in the last six years to try and block the president at every turn, but their brand is degraded by what they’ve done. Their numbers are far worse than his and heading into the 2016 election, they have a lot of rehabilitation to do not just to win the presidency if that’s their goal but also to elect a lot of senators who are in blue states, Republican senators, their map is worse from that standpoint than the Democratic map was in 2014. They need to show they can work with this president. He ought to take advantage of that and see where they can…

I know he wants to keep faith with all of those Americans who want him to act and all those who are suffering with this broken immigration system. 

But the fact is a strong bipartisan bill was passed by the United States Senate. If I were the president, i would go to John Boehner and say i’m willing to withdraw my plan for executive action if you’re willing to put this bill on the floor for a vote. I’ll live with the results of that vote. There’s a very good reason to believe that a majority of members of the House support this bipartisan Senate bill and while the Republicans are warning about taking what they consider extraordinary action on the part of the president, it’s also extraordinary to keep the House of Representatives from voting on a bill that a majority want to pass and so the Speaker if he wants to demonstrate that this is a new era, he can do that by putting that bill on the floor. That would obviate the need for any executive action.

(h/t RCP Video)

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