Someone’s Suggestion to Obama: Skirt Obstructive GOP, Announce a ‘State of Emergency’

September 2, 2014 - 2:56 PM

Last Friday, President Obama made his way through Rhode Island and New York in an effort to raise money for Democrats who will be running in the coming midterm elections. Obama spoke at two events benefiting the Democratic National Committee. The first event was a closed-door round table with about 25 supporters paying as much as $32,400 apiece, and the second, was an event comprised of about 250 supporters who paid $15,000 or more per couple.

The New York Times said the following about the events that transpired:

“Mr. Obama flew to Westchester County, N.Y., for two events benefiting the Democratic National Committee. The first was a closed-door round table with about 25 supporters paying as much as $32,400 apiece. The event was hosted by George Logothetis, a shipping heir and chairman of the Libra Group, and his wife, Nitzia Logothetis, founder of Seleni, a nonprofit organization promoting mental health for women around the world. It was held at the home of Camilo Patrignani, the chief executive of Greenwood Energy, a subsidiary of Libra, and his wife, Lucia.

“Evidently, during the event, Mr. Obama encountered some of the anxiety he later referred to, because at his next stop, which was open to reporters, he said someone had just suggested that he declare a national state of emergency, a notion he quickly discounted as not the way the United States worked."

Obama, as recorded by the White House transcript, stated the following at the second DNC event in Purchase, New York:

“And so the fact that they (Republicans in Congress) haven’t gotten anything done shouldn’t be that surprising, but it should also not feed your cynicism -- it should feed a determination to want to get out there and have something better.  (Applause.)  And that is something that I cannot do alone.  I’ve got to do it with all of you.

“I was in a meeting earlier today and somebody asked, you know, Mr. President, what can you do, these folks, they just -- all they do is just oppose whatever you propose even if they used to be for it, now they’re against it; if you said the sky was blue, they’d say it was green; they deny the facts, they don’t have any ideas for growing the economy or helping the middle class -- maybe you just need to announce a state of emergency.  I said, well, now, I’m not going to do that, that’s not how the Constitution works.  (Laughter.)  I said to them, you know, there’s actually a solution to this that our Founders envisioned, and that is people being involved citizens and getting out there and voting, and bringing about change through the ballot box.”

The aforementioned meetings and Obama’s curious statement regarding the possibility of announcing “a state of emergency” can also be found in a blog post published by The Weekly Standard.