Despite POTUS drive to be remembered for a host of legacy issues, Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.) said if history books were written today President Obama would be remembered for sequestration.
Alexander, the Ranking Member of the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, yesterday on the Senate floor called Obama’s leadership “a colossal failure, because he will not respect this Congress and work with it in a way to get results…he’s known for a year that the sequester was coming, but there was no meeting with the Republican or Democratic leaders that I know about until the day it started.”
“It’s time for this president to show the kind of presidential leadership that President Johnson did on civil rights, that President Nixon did on China, that President Carter did on the Panama Canal Treaty, that President Reagan did on Social Security, and that Presidents George H.W. Bush and Clinton and George W. Bush did,” he continued. “Respect the other branches of government. Confront your own party where necessary. Listen to what both have to say and fashion a consensus that most of us can support.”
Alexander called the sequester “automatic spending decreases which are the result of automatic spending increases in entitlements that the president is unwilling to confront.”
At a speech Tuesday morning to the Federation of American Hospitals, the senator said “one reason we have this sequester is this president’s unwillingness to show respect for, and work easily with, members of Congress. …the second reason is this president’s unwillingness to confront what most people believe is the single biggest issue facing our country, which is the out-of-control costs of mandatory entitlement spending in the federal budget, led by Medicare.”
“It may be the president doesn’t like some of us. Well, President Eisenhower had that same feeling about members of Congress, and someone asked him how do you get along with them?”Alexander continued. “He said, I look first at the office. I respect the office. I don’t think about the person who occupies the office.”