Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) explained Wednesday that Republicans would be happy to work with President Barack Obama on “the really serious, seemingly intractable problems” as longer as he agreed to do things their way.
“If the president is willing to do what I and my members would do anyway, we’re not going to say no,” McConnell said at a breakfast hosted by Politico’s Mike Allen.
“But that’s not much of a concession,” Allen noted. “That’s not bargaining, to just give you what you want.”
“I like to think I’m a pretty good negotiator,” McConnell said.
Allen continued to press the Minority Leader, asking if he would be willing to grant any concessions to the president while negotiating a long-term solution to Social Security other divisive issues.
“It depends,” McConnell replied. “We can’t negotiate sitting here this morning.”
“I’m not surprised he won’t say what he’ll do on entitlements [in the State of the Union speech],” he added. “I wouldn’t either. So it’s not so much what he says tonight but what he’s willing to do.”
McConnell’s Wednesday remarks echoed comments he made after big Republican wins in November.
“If the administration wants cooperation, it will have to begin to move in our direction,” he said following the midterm elections.
This video is from C-SPAN 2, broadcast Jan. 25, 2011 and uploaded by Think Progress.