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Obama: "I'd Like To Believe" GOP Recognizes Shutdown Was A Bad Strategy

PRESIDENT OBAMA: I think that the way our system is set up is like a loaded gun. And once people thought we can get leverage on policy disputes by threatening default, that was an extraordinarily dangerous precedent. And that’s a principle that I had to adhere to, not just for me but for the next president, that you’re not going to be able to threaten the entire U.S. or world economy simply because you disagree with me about a health care bill.

I’d like to believe that the Republicans recognize that was not a good strategy, and we’re probably better off with a system in which that threat is not there on a perpetual basis. I do not foresee what we saw in October being repeated in January.

But, you know, the broader point is one that I think all of us have to take to heart.

We have to be able to disagree on policy issues without resorting to the kinds of extreme tactics that end up hurting all of us. And that’s been my main disagreement with a lot of my Republican friends.

And frankly, the American people agree with that. They don’t expect us to march in lockstep. There’s a reason why we’ve got two parties in this country. They do expect that we are constantly thinking about how are we making sure they can find a job that pays well, that their kids can go to college and afford it, that we are growing and competitive, that, you know, we are dealing with our fiscal position in a sensible way. And — and if we keep them in mind consistently, then I think we’re going to be successful.

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