SAN JOSE, California: President Barack Obama will further his vow to sell his jobs plan in the four corners of America Monday, after warning a Republican win in 2012 elections could “cripple” the country.
Obama was to appear in a town-hall style meeting sponsored by executive social network LinkedIn in San Jose, before tapping donors in Democratic strongholds in San Diego and Los Angeles.
Faced with a recalcitrant Congress and Republicans who accuse him of waging class warfare over his call to raise taxes on millionaires and billionaires, Obama told supporters Sunday to brace for a “tough” reelection campaign.
“This is going to be especially hard because a lot of people are discouraged and a lot of people are disillusioned,” Obama said at a fundraising event in Seattle, Washington.
“I’m determined because there’s too much at stake.
“The alternative I think is an approach to government that would fundamentally cripple America in meeting the challenges of the 21st century.”
Later, in San Jose, the president portrayed Republican presidential candidates as extreme and suggested their conservative audiences were not reflective of mainstream America.
“Has anyone been watching the debates lately?” he asked.
“You’ve got a governor whose state is on fire denying climate change,” Obama said, referring to Texas Governor Rick Perry.
“You’ve got audiences cheering at the prospect of somebody dying because they don’t have health care, and booing a service member in Iraq because they are gay.”
Events in five western cities over three days are designed to allow Obama to hike pressure on Congress to pass his dollar 447 billion jobs bill.
A string of fundraisers are meanwhile aimed at raising millions of dollars for his campaign account ahead of a key interim fundraising deadline at the end of the month.
He accused Republicans, who have controlled the House of Representatives since January, of blocking his initiatives to save the reeling economy at every turn instead of helping him fight successive crises.
With his initiatives hitting a wall of Republican opposition in Congress, Obama has made a sharp rhetorical switch in recent weeks, from seeking compromise with his opponents to hammering them in populist campaign rhetoric.
At a second event in Seattle, Obama called on a crowd of supporters to “shake off any doldrums” to fire up his 2012 reelection bid, and slammed Republican claims he was indulging in class warfare.
“The only class warfare I’ve seen is the battle waged against the middle class,” he said.
“It’s about priorities,” he said.
Many observers feel that Obama’s jobs bill has little chance of passing Congress, at least in recognizable form, as even some Democrats in the Senate oppose part of it.
But his senior advisor David Plouffe said Sunday that he believed the bill would get a vote.
“I think it’s got a very good chance,” Plouffe said on ABC’s “This Week” program.
“This has tax cuts for every small business and every worker, rehiring teachers, modernizing our schools, helping rebuild our infrastructure.”