NO SEQUEL WITH SENATE GOP…. The president has, over the last week, engaged the House Republican caucus and the Senate Democratic caucus directly, delivering remarks and answering questions. Nothing was behind closed doors — the whole country could watch the events on television or online.
Now President Obama would like to stop by for a similar, publicly-available chat with Senate Republicans. Wouldn’t you know it, they’re not fond of the idea.
Senate Republicans don’t have much of an appetite to give President Barack Obama their version of question-and-answer time — not after seeing how Obama handled House Republicans last week.
“We’re always happy to hear from the president but I don’t really feel any compelling need to do it [on camera],” Texas Sen. John Cornyn, the Republicans’ chief campaign strategist, told POLITICO.
The White House has suggested that it would like Obama to address the Senate GOP Conference, with TV cameras present. Obama administration officials are eager for voters to see Obama operate in a format he relishes — and handle his former Senate colleagues the same way he did last week to House Republicans at their annual retreat.
“They don’t want anything to do with it,” said a GOP insider. “They want the whole thing to just go away.”
I can’t say I blame them. Obama looked awfully strong in Baltimore last week, and Republican talking points crumble pretty quickly when smacked down by a president who knows what he’s talking about. It would have been entertaining to see a sequel, but GOP senators no doubt realize that Obama would make them appear foolish, too.
Notice, however, how Cornyn explains his caucus’s reluctance: “I think we’re more interested in serious public policy issues rather than providing another photo-opportunity for the president.”
Senate Republicans? More interested in “serious public policy”?
Can’t … type … laughing … too … hard….