Politics & Policy

Montage: President Obama’s Contributions to Civility in Washington

Speaking Wednesday at the Illinois State Senate, President Obama said, “One of my few regrets [as president] is my inability to reduce the polarization and meanness in our politics.” 

“I was able to be part of that” in Illinois, Obama said, “and yet couldn’t translate it the way I wanted to into our politics in Washington.”

If President Obama is curious why he’s failed to change the tone in Washington, he might consider how he spoke about Republicans during some of the more contentious fights of his presidency. 

When Republicans said President Obama must submit the Iran deal to Congress, he said they were making “common cause with some of the hard-liners in Iran.”

When Republicans sought attaching spending restraints to a bill raising the debt ceiling, Obama accused the GOP of taking America hostage. White House spokesman Dan Pfeiffer even likened Republicans to suicide bombers. 

When Republicans called for slowing down the importation of Syrian refugees in the aftermath of the most recent Paris terror attack, Obama, speaking from the Philippines, said these kinds of comments offered ISIS a “potent recruitment tool.”

And that’s just a sampling. Check out the montage above for more. 

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