Narrative Journalism (originally journalism that tells a story but now morphing into journalism with a purpose that ignores facts not consistent with the desired story) has maintained, as does the President in the first paragraph below, that the Republicans have refused to compromise and have been part of a “do nothing” Congress, “grinding the wheels of Congress to a halt”. The President’s end of the year interview with NPR continues with his standard “blame the Republican” narrative so unquestioningly reported by supporting media. But in a moment of candor, the President corroborates much of what those of us who have been paying attention already know. (http://www.npr.org/2014/12/29/372485968/transcript-president-obamas-full-npr-interview)
“On the other hand, now you’ve got Republicans in a position where it’s not enough for them simply to grind the wheels of Congress to a halt and then blame me. They are going to be in a position in which they have to show that they can responsibly govern, given that they have significant majorities in both chambers.
And, you know, what I’ve said repeatedly is that I want to work with them; I want to get things done. I don’t have another election to run.
There are going to be areas where we agree and I’m going to be as aggressive as I can be in getting legislation passed that I think help move the economy forward and help middle-class families. There are going to be some areas where we disagree and, you know, I haven’t used the veto pen very often since I’ve been in office, partly because legislation that I objected to was typically blocked in the Senate even after the House took over — Republicans took over the House.”
The sentence highlighted by me in red is not a surprise. The reality is that most bills passed by the House were never brought to a vote in the Senate (succinctly illustrated in https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xs4bselnhHw) , a fact that most politically motivated narrative journalism conveniently ignored. Also ignored was the fact that most of those bills were bipartisan. The President can no longer avoid confronting legislation that he dislikes. He will continue to use all of the right words, lacing his speeches with “compromise”, “work with”, “get things done”, “help the middle class”…… He will undoubtedly continue to blame the other party. But he will now be forced to openly make decisions on bipartisan legislation and we shall see how closely his ideology parallels that of the American public.
***Gary A. Howie MSc, PhD*** is a business owner/rancher and a Life & Liberty News contributor