Reactions to Obama's Call to Tweet

He says time is running out, and turns to the Senate for a last-minute plan

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President Obama urged Senate Democrats and Republicans to come up with some kind of compromise to raise the debt ceiling Friday after the House failed to pass a plan that would have died in the Senate anyway. Speaker John Boehner's bill--a more conservative version of which is expected to pass soon--"it does not solve the problem, and it has no chance of becoming law," Obama said. "We are almost out of time," Obama said, and listed the many consequences of default. Then he urged voters to hit Congress with a bit more of the citizenly harassment that shut down Congress's switchboard earlier this week: "If you want to see a bipartisan compromise--a bill that can pass both houses of Congress and that I can sign--let your members of Congress know. Make a phone call. Send an email. Tweet. Keep the pressure on Washington, and we can get past this."

CBS News' Stephanie Condon noted some symbolism in the visuals: "Mr. Obama delivered his remarks from the White House Diplomatic Reception Room--a setting perhaps chosen to send a message to the House, where diplomacy appeared to be sorely lacking Thursday night."
The New York Times' Michael D. Shear writes that Obama is reasserting himself after having been "mostly on the sidelines for days as John A. Boehner, the House speaker, has been engaged in a battle with conservative freshmen... House Republicans were meeting even as Mr. Obama began his remarks."
NBC News' Mark Murray says it's important that Obama mentioned he'd support an "enforcement mechanism" to require more spending cuts if Congress is unable to push through reform of entitlements and the tax code. "What this trigger would be is currently one of the final sticking points between Democrats and Republicans," Murray writes.
But National Journal's Major Garrett tweets a more depressing analysis of the speech: "POTUS speech distilled: time running out, compromise in sight, default is bad, will work all weekend. In other words: No news." But other reactions underscore that one. Time's Michael Scherer observes, "'Tweet,' says the President of the United States." And Gawker's John Cook adds, "It's weird when POTUS urges people to patronize a private for-profit corp. It's like saying "Call your congressman with your iPhone."
This article is from the archive of our partner The Wire.