President Obama is growing more assertive on Capitol Hill. Since he took office, the president's supporters have criticized him for not exerting enough control over the details of legislation, instead letting Harry Reid and Nancy Pelosi hammer out specifics—even on major administration goals, like the health care bill. On legislation this week concerning the Gulf oil spill and financial regulation, Obama has switched to a prescriptive style, reports Politico.
Both bills dealt with issues that could cause big trouble for the Democrats if they're mishandled. “He’s stepping in because he’ll be held accountable in 2012 if he doesn’t,” one Democratic staffer says. “The clock is running out, and they realize they need to provide a much more specific idea of what they want,” adds another. “We like it. We can use the sense of direction.”