CBS News Political Director: With Republicans ‘Only Aggression Will Get Deals Made’
By Jeffrey Meyer | January 21, 2013 | 12:17
CBS’s John Dickerson has once again used violent imagery to describe President Obama’s relationship with congressional Republicans in his second term. Speaking prior to President Obama’s second inauguration ceremony on live network coverage shortly after 10:30 a.m. Eastern Monday, Dickerson insisted that, “only aggression will get deals made.” So much for "changing the tone" in Washington or appealing to the "better angels of our nature" to borrow from President Lincoln.
Dickerson’s violent rhetoric comes just two days after he commented that, “Obama can only cement his legacy if he destroys the GOP.” Dickerson seems to place blame solely at the feet of House Republicans while the victimized President Obama needs to strike a “more aggressive tone” during his second term. “He [Obama] just thinks that a deal made with Republicans in Congress in the House specifically will not get through the House.” [See video after jump. MP3 audio here.]
At no point did Dickerson address the intransigence of Senate Democrats, who have failed to pass a budget in more than three years, and who persistently refuse to call votes on virtually anything that House Republicans pass through the lower chamber.
See relevant transcript below.
CBS Presidential Inauguration 2012
January 21, 2013
10:37 a.m. EST
SCOTT PELLEY: John Dickerson, our CBS News Political Director is down there on the National Mall. And John, what are you expecting as we await the president's departure from the White House?
JOHN DICKERSON: Well, Scott, in talking to someone close to President Obama about this speech, they started off-- their description of it by saying well, he won't say that he won, but now when you start a description that way, it means part of the message in this speech today, although it will be about coming together and what a divided Washington can do on these big problems, inside this speech there will be an argument for the values he fought for during the campaign. This is not a speech full of specifics, paired kind of with the State of the Union. The specifics will be in that. This is about themes. But in it, the president will be making a case for what he won. This is a part of his new tone in the second part of his – in his second administration which is a more aggressive tone. And in dealing with Congress one final note. It's not so much that he doesn't think schmoozing will work because they're not nice people. He just thinks that a deal made with Republicans in Congress in the House specifically will not get through the House. And that he has to be more aggressive because only aggression will get deals made.