You think relations are chilly between the White House and Capitol Hill? You might not know the half of it, as Politico’s David Rogers reports:
But the sequence of events does capture how much the normal courtesies between this White House and Congress have deteriorated — even in front of guests from another country.
“There appear to be no rules anymore. If you can do it, do it,” said Patrick Griffin, who recalls nothing quite like this even in the tempestuous times Griffin served as White House liaison between President Bill Clinton and Speaker Newt Gingrich (R-Ga.). Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-Calif.), herself a former speaker who oversaw similar joint meetings for foreign guests, said the management of the invitation was “inappropriate” and Boehner risks squandering his power in a fit of “hubris.”
But privately, Democrats admit too that this White House — as seen in the South Korea episode — is no innocent. And Jackson, who has served at both ends of Pennsylvania Avenue, said he is baffled that the administration should talk now about “protocol” after being so quick to exert its executive power to run over Congress.
“This is not the first time where they got cross-wise thinking the House was not an equal branch,” Jackson said. “When I heard about this, I shook my head.”
From there, the report really gets ugly — you’ll want to read the whole thing.
Fact is, President Obama doesn’t even play well with his own cabinet, much less mere Congresscritters. As we’ve discussed here repeatedly, his inner circle seems to consist now of Valerie Jarrett and whichever of his old first term cronies he can get on the phone. This state of affairs might explain part of last week’s Bizarro Earth State of the Union Address, the rest of which can be explained by partisan politics and Obama’s notorious mean streak.
He’ll leave the White House still adored by millions, and liked by nobody.