After a weekend of playing the punching bag, President Obama is hitting back with a three-day bus trip through the Midwest that includes five town halls and a lot of bruising shots at what he casts as a do-nothing GOP-led Congress.
Rolling out the artillery at his first stop this afternoon in Cannon Falls, Minn, Obama said, "I'm not here just to enjoy the nice weather. I'm here to enlist you in a fight. We are fighting for then future of our country and that is a fight that we are going to win."
Obama needs to make sure America's debt fatigue does not become Obama fatigue. His approval rating hit a new low over the weekend, dipping to 39%. The mainstream media and the GOP field of presidential wannabees quickly latched on to the Gallup number.
The GOP candidates, in high-profile speeches in Iowa and South Carolina, focused on questioning Obama's leadership in a stinging barrage that drew cheers, but failed to further sink the President's poll numbers. The Gallup daily tracking poll actually ticked upwards by two points today to 41%.
Obama hopes to counterattack by striking back at the most unpopular entity in Washington: The GOP-led House and filibuster-prone Senate Republicans, which have a dismal 28% approval rating, according to a Gallop survey last month.
The President and his advisors believe there is plenty of evidence that the Republicans are stalling at moving forward with a jobs agenda, instead focusing on protecting the rich from paying their fair share of taxes.
Driving home his point, Obama served up a menu today of pending and proposed legislation that Congress could pass immediately to help spur job-creation, including a payroll tax cut, tax credits for companies that hire war veterans, creation of an infrastructure bank to rebuild America and put builders and constructions workers back to work, international trade deals and patent reforms to make it easier to turn ideas into businesses.
"So there is no shortage of ideas to put people to work right now. What is needed is action on the part of Congress, a willingness to put the partisan games aside and say we're going to do what's right for the country, not what we think is going to score some political points for the next election," Obama said.
Obama picked up some support from the biggest name in Wall Street circles, when mega-investor Warren Buffett wrote an op-ed for The New York Times titled, "Stop Coddling the Super-Rich."
"While the poor and middle class fight for us in Afghanistan, and while most Americans struggle to make ends meet, we mega-rich continue to get our extraordinary tax breaks," Buffett wrote.