The Campaign Spot

‘I am not king. I can’t do these things just by myself.’

Has there ever been an American president who needed to clarify this point?

In an effort to energize Latino voters, President Obama defended his administration’s efforts to work for a comprehensive immigration plan, while adding that he was frustrated by the failures of Congress to deal with the issue.

In an interview with Eddie “Piolin” Sotelo, recorded when Obama was in Los Angeles last week, the president blamed Republicans for refusing to work on the needed legislation. As he has in the past, Obama noted that 11 Republican senators voted for immigration reform four years ago but walked away from the issue in this midterm-election year.

“The fact that we have not got it done is something that frustrates me, and I know that it frustrates many people in the community,” Obama said, according to a transcript of the show, “Piolin por la Mañana.” “The problem that we have is, is that until I can get some cooperation from the other side, then people who are anti-immigration reform can continue to block it.”

When Piolin asserted that it appeared that the Obama administration had worked less hard on immigration than  it had on other issues, such as healthcare, Obama disagreed.

“My cabinet has been working very hard on trying to get it done, but ultimately, I think somebody said the other day, I am president, I am not king. I can’t do these things just by myself. We have a system of government that requires the Congress to work with the executive branch to make it happen. I’m committed to making it happen, but I’ve gotta have some partners to do it,” Obama said.

Pretty astounding rhetoric from a guy who has 59 Senate seats controlled by his party and 255 House seats.

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