(WASHINGTON) — Touting his recent congressional outreach, President Obama says he is working with Republicans and Democrats to “untangle some of the gridlock” in Washington so the nation’s economy can continue to grow.
Boasting that the unemployment rate is “now lower than it was when I took office,” Obama says “we need to do everything we can to keep that momentum going.”
“At a time when our businesses are gaining a little more traction, the last thing we should do is allow Washington politics to get in the way,” he says in his weekly address. “You deserve better than the same political gridlock and refusal to compromise that has too often passed for serious debate over the last few years.”
The president has been courting rank-and -file lawmakers in an effort to jumpstart budget negotiations and reach an agreement to replace the across-the-board sequester spending cuts.
“As Democrats and Republicans, we may disagree on the best way to achieve our goals, but I’m confident we can agree on what those goals should be,” Obama says. “A strong and vibrant middle class. An economy that allows businesses to grow and thrive. An education system that gives more Americans the skills they need to compete for the jobs of the future. An immigration system that actually works for families and businesses. Stronger communities and safer streets for our children.”
Earlier this week, the president met for dinner with 12 GOP Senators. “We had an open and honest conversation about critical issues like immigration reform and gun violence, and other areas where we can work together to move this country forward,” he says.
Those discussions will continue next week when Obama attends both the House and Senate Democratic and Republican party meetings in the Capitol.
Copyright 2013 ABC News Radio
Mike Price, EastIdahoNews.com
Scott Stuntz, Teton Valley News
Phil Mattingly, Tom LoBianco and David Mark, CNN
Jennifer Rizzo, CNN