Will the recent government shutdown help or hurt President Obama?
WASHINGTON — As the National Zoo reopened and the White House lawn was mowed Friday, the fallout from the shutdown was evident.
That could empower President Obama in upcoming battles, or hamper him with increased partisanship, making a longterm deal on the budget and on immigration even more difficult.
Senate Republican Leader Mitch Mcconnell, who worked with Democrats to avoid default, is now being targeted by conservatives who backed his primary opponent and vowed no compromise on the big issue.
The shutdown also tipped another election more toward a Democrat, Terry Mcauliffe, now with an eight point lead in the Virginia governor’s race.
President Barack Obama challenged the GOP to end political brinkmanship and said Republicans should “win an election” if they so badly wish to change his policies.
In his first extended remarks since the government reopened, Obama said that the public has grown “fed up” with its government and urged lawmakers to move past the conflict of the past few weeks.
“To all my friends in Congress, understand that how business is done in this town has to change,” he said.
“You don’t like a particular policy or a particular president? Then argue for your position. Go out there and win an election,” The president said. “But don’t break it.”
And late Wednesday, House and Senate leaders appointed representatives to a similar conference committee to hash out the details of the House and Senate budgets. Democratic and Republican budget leaders had breakfast on Monday, and were conciliatory in their language.
But the next test for Washington will come in January, when the latest tranche of government funding expires.
Immigration also faces a treacherous path forward, as House Republicans have resisted passing the comprehensive Senate bill which gives undocumented residents of the United States a pathway to citizenship.