In a White House meeting, Obama brought together the top officials
in his government a day after conceding that a deadlocked Congress
will prompt him to act on his own authority where he can on an
Obama said he wants to work with Congress where possible, "but if
Congress is unable to do it," then he said his Cabinet officials and
agency heads should look for areas where executive actions can "show
some real progress."
"The people who sent us here, they just don’t feel as if anybody is
fighting for them or working them. We’re not always going to be able
to get things through Congress ... but we sure as heck can make sure
that the folks back home know that we are pushing their agenda and
that we’re working hard on their behalf," Obama said.
Obama's comments amounted to a recognition he is unlikely to get
substantial legislation through Congress this year ahead of
congressional elections in November elections.
Republicans are in no mood to compromise ahead of elections in which
they could take control of the Senate from the Democrats and build
on their majority in the House of Representatives.
Obama on Monday said House Speaker John Boehner had told him last
week the House would not vote on immigration legislation this year.
[to top of second column]
Obama, who has pushed for the immigration overhaul, said his
advisers would give recommendations to him by the end of the summer
on what he can do administratively on the issue. The president this
year has raised the minimum wage for federal contract workers and
taken other steps through executive order, but he is limited on how
far he can go without actual legislation.
(Reporting by Steve Holland; Editing by Paul Simao)
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