WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Barack Obama said on Thursday that Republicans who control the House of Representatives have to be “embarrassed” by their inability to produce legislation such as an immigration overhaul.
Obama’s comments in an interview with MSNBC‘S “Hardball” show were a sign that tensions linger between him and congressional Republicans after a government shutdown and close brush with a debt default in October sent all Washington politicians’ job approval ratings tumbling.
Obama wants the House to approve an immigration overhaul that the Democratic-controlled Senate has already passed, but House Speaker John Boehner is showing no signs of taking action on the legislation this year as the president wants.
Obama said the concerns of some Republicans that they will face conservative challenges in the November 2014 congressional elections inhibits their ability to compromise.
“And I actually think there are a bunch of Republicans who want to get stuff done. They’ve gotta be embarrassed. Because the truth of the matter is that they’ve now been in charge of the House of Representatives ... for a couple of years and they just don’t have a lot to show for it,” he said.
The comments from Obama were unlikely to help improve the climate between him and Republicans, who routinely bristle at his criticisms. They say he refuses to compromise with them.
Reporting By Steve Holland; Editing by Mohammad Zargham