President Obama admitted Wednesday that his party got hit hard, in fact, he took a "shellacking" he said, in Tuesday night's midterm elections and he vowed to work with the in-coming Republicans in a bipartisan fashion, but Republicans say there's a new way of doing things and while they're willing to negotiate, the president shouldn't expect to have things done his way anymore.
At a White House news conference, held in part to react to what was expected to be major defeats for Democrats, Obama admitted while the night did not go well for his party, he was looking forward to compromising on certain issues with people like House Minority Leader and likely next speaker, Rep. John Boehner (R-Oh) and Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky).
"I think I've been willing to compromise in the past and I'm going to be willing to compromise going forward on a whole range of issues," Obama said at the White House. "Let's go ahead and start making some progress on the things that we do agree on, and we can continue to have a strong and healthy debate about those areas where we don't."
But if the White House is hoping that Republicans on the Hill will be as conciliatory in tone, they may be disappointed. While Boehner doesn't have the speaker title yet, he held a press conference with McConnell on the Hill discussing what the Republican agenda will be in the next two years, and made it clear there are new issues to be handled - with or without the president. "The new majority here in Congress will be the voice of the American people, and I think we clearly expressed that last night. We're going to continue and renew our efforts for a smaller, less costly and more accountable government here in Washington, D.C.," Boehner said at the press conference Wednesday morning.
For his part, the president said he heard loud and clear in this election cycle that Americans don't want Washington working against them and spending time on partisan bickering. But as to whether or not he would have the new Republican leadership over for a meeting anytime soon was left open-ended, except perhaps for what might be served." I want to ask if you're going to have John Boehner over for a Slurpee but I actually have a serious question," queried Hans Nichols of Bloomberg. "I might serve, they're delicious drinks," said Obama. "The Slurpee Summit, that's good. I like it."