Stimulus in the Bag, Obama Rethinks Strategy

President will push hard for the agenda he wants
By Gabriel Winant,  Newser User
Posted Feb 13, 2009 11:15 AM CST
President Barack Obama waves to a crowd of national guard soldiers and their families in Peoria, Ill., Feb 12th. Taking his agenda outside DC will be a key part of his new strategy.   (AP Photo/Bill Gaither)
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(Newser) – President Obama got his way, more or less, on the stimulus, but the process demonstrated Congress' abiding disinterest in bipartisanship. For future big-ticket items—and there are a lot of them—the president will take a tougher approach, Mike Allen and Jonathan Martin write for Politico. Chief of staff Rahm Emanuel offers a preview: “He has an open hand, but he has a very firm handshake.”

The White House is planning to move soon on new financial regulations, stem-cell research, energy standards, and health care. And though Obama is still interested in Republican cooperation, he will go outside DC to push his agenda if necessary. Says a top adviser, “The inside game is important, but it’s actually not where the success of his presidency is going to come.”