For the second straight day after Tuesday’s electoral earthquake remade the political map, the White House had no discernible scintilla of change in approach, other than to say that the president might change his approach. Just how, exactly, is still a mystery.
After President Barack Obama said Wednesday that he heard the voters but declined to say what he thought they were telling him, Press Secretary Josh Earnest didn’t have anything new for reporters either.
The Democrats look set to have the same leadership teams they’ve had for more than a decade on Capitol Hill, and Obama isn’t about to make wholesale changes in his own staff, Earnest suggested, though he did allow that maybe the president would “look at his team” and that some might decide to go in the normal course of events. But that’s what Earnest was saying in the weeks before the voters body slammed Democrats across the map.
Earnest said that Obama could “probably” have done a better job reaching out to Republicans, but also noted that Republicans had made opposition to all of his policies their political agenda. Now that they’ve taken over Congress, Earnest expressed some hope that they might now change their obstructionist approach and try to get some things done.
Earnest said that could start with things like transportation spending and trade — areas where both sides agree.
And he dismissed calls from the new Republican leadership for the president to forego executive actions on immigration lest he poison the well.
“The answer is yes, the president is going to take that action,” Earnest said.
The president, meanwhile, looks forward to having lunch with the leadership Friday.
Your move, GOP.
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