Obama, Pelosi Still Finding Their Way
By Ben Pershing
On Friday, President Obama will be in Columbus, Ohio, to tout the benefits of the economic stimulus measure, a bill that would not have made it to his desk without the assent and firm imprint of Nancy Pelosi. The same will be true on health care reform, energy and every other major piece of legislation Obama hopes to sign during his tenure.
Given how important each is to the political success of the other, it's worth examining the state of the burgeoning relationship between the president and the Speaker of the House, a subject that has prompted a host of sometimes contradictory stories in recent days. Depending on whom you read, Obama and Pelosi either get along well or not, agree on most issues or not and stand in each other's way or not.
On Saturday, Newsweek published a piece titled, "Obama's Pelosi Problem," which suggested -- as we've heard before -- that Obama really did want bipartisan support for the stimulus package but Pelosi really didn't. And, for that matter, it said that the two Democrats "get on each other's nerves" even though they "need each other politically." But the very same day, the New York Times posted a story headlined, "Frustrated G.O.P. Tries to Drive Wedge Between Obama and Pelosi." That piece mostly blamed Republicans for advancing the theory that the two are working at cross-purposes, saying that while Pelosi might be a bit more liberal than Obama, "the two share plenty of common philosophical ground and have similar policy goals."
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