In his weekly radio address last weekend, President Obama lamented “gridlock” and singled out Sen. Mike Lee of Utah for being an “obstructionist.” The president accused Lee of “gumming up the works.”
President Barack Obama turned up the heat on the GOP Saturday, sounding a now-familiar refrain about obstructionist tactics by congressional Republicans and holding up as an example a pledge by one senator to block presidential nominations until the president gives in to his demands.
“We weren’t sent here to wage perpetual political campaigns against each other. We were sent here to serve the American people. And they deserve better than gridlock and games,” Obama said in his weekly address to the nation. “One senator gumming up the whole works for the entire country is certainly not what our founding fathers envisioned.”
Sen. Mike Lee, a freshman Republican from Utah, made the pledge Thursday, saying he was fuming over the president’s recent recess appointments to the National Labor Relations Board and of Richard Cordray to head the new consumer financial protection agency. At a Judiciary Committee hearing, Lee demanded that Obama rescind the appointments.
It’s clear from Sen. Lee’s appearance on America’s Radio News today (audio at the link) that he has no intentions of backing down.
SEN LEE: Litigation might take longer than we have in this circumstance. That’s one of the reasons I’m drawing attention to it now, not just through the filing of an amicus brief at some point…What the president wants is our ongoing cooperation, our ongoing assistance, which we’ve been giving him in confirming the overwhelming majority of his nominees to the judicial positions and executive branch positions…I’m not going to pretend as if nothing has happened here. I’m not going to lend the legitimacy of my yes vote, as I’ve been doing in the past in light of what the president has done here, which is thumb his nose at the Constitution, the American people, and the very concept of the rule of law.
Lee says he intends to keep the heat on the president, to get the “recess” appointments to the NLRB and the Consumer Financial Protection Board, which was created by the controversial Dodd-Frank legislation, overturned.