Journal Express, Knoxville, IA

Features

January 14, 2013

President Obama's end-of-term press conference

(Continued)

Washington, D.C. —

 
 
 
     And the reason that, in many cases, Congress votes the way they do, or talks the way they talk, or takes positions in negotiations that they take doesn't have to do with me.  It has to do with the imperatives that they feel in terms of their own politics -- right?  They're worried about their district.  They're worried about what's going on back home. 
 
 
 
     I think there are a lot of Republicans at this point that feel that given how much energy has been devoted in some of the media that's preferred by Republican constituencies to demonize me, that it doesn't look real good socializing with me.  Charlie Crist down in Florida I think testifies to that.  And I think a lot of folks say, well, if we look like we're being too cooperative or too chummy with the President that might cause us problems.  That might be an excuse for us to get a challenge from somebody in a primary.
 
 
 
     So that tends to be the challenge.  I promise you, we invite folks from Congress over here all the time.  And when they choose to come, I enjoy their company.  Sometimes they don't choose to come, and that has to do with the fact that I think they don't consider the optics useful for them politically.  And, ultimately, the way we're going to get stuff done -- personal relationships are important, and obviously I can always do a better job, and the nice thing is, is that now that my girls are getting older, they don't want to spend that much time with me anyway, so I'll be probably calling around, looking for somebody to play cards with me or something, because I'm getting kind of lonely in this big house.  (Laughter.)  So maybe a whole bunch of members of the House Republican caucus want to come over and socialize more. 

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