While speaking at a Democratic policy committee conference last week, President Obama urged Senate Democrats to stay aggressive and press ahead with their legislative agenda. He also took several shots at Republican lawmakers, stating that they have been unwilling to compromise and have been impeding progress.
While taking questions from Democratic senators who are up for re-election in November, Obama promised to "call (Republicans) out when (Democrats) extend a hand and get a fist in return," according to CNN.
The president also chided Senate Republicans for demanding that Democrats produce a 60-vote majority on every issue, no matter how arbitrary.
"You had to cast more votes to break filibusters last year than in the entire 1950s and ’60s combined," said Obama. "That’s 20 years of obstruction packed into just one." He added that a filibuster is justified only when there is a legitimate attempt to compromise.
The president also lashed out at members of the GOP for having an "if you lose, I win" mentality, citing examples of Republican maneuvering based solely on political considerations.
In recent months, the administration has come under fire from the GOP for what the party saw as the majority’s attempt to push through healthcare reform legislation behind closed doors, without consulting the Republicans. "I take some fault for this," Obama admitted, quoted by Fox News. "Some of [the] transparency got lost and I think we paid a price for it."