Nightly News | August 11, 2011
KRISTEN WELKER reporting: I'm Kristen Welker at the White House . The tough talk wasn't just on the campaign trail, the commander in chief was also fired up.
President BARACK OBAMA: There is nothing wrong with our country. There is something wrong with our politics.
WELKER: Speaking at a factory in Holland , Michigan , President Obama tried to tap into the frustration that has been expressed by people all across the country who say government isn't working hard enough to fix an economy in turmoil.
Pres. OBAMA: People are frustrated. Maybe you hear it in my voice. That's why I'm frustrated, because you deserve better.
WELKER: Mr. Obama pointed the finger squarely at Congress , saying it was partisan wrangling that led to the recent downgrade of the nation's credit for the first time in US history .
Pres. OBAMA: This downgrade you've been reading about could have been entirely avoided if there had been a willingness to compromise in Congress .
WELKER: House Speaker John Boehner reacted this afternoon, releasing a statement that says " President Obama likes to talk about being the adult in the room but there's nothing adult about political grandstanding." And even the president's base has lashed out, saying Mr. Obama hasn't shown enough leadership.
Mr. TAVIS SMILEY (PBS Talk Show Host): The Republicans know that this president will compromise. They know he will capitulate.
Unidentified Man #4: Yeah.
Mr. SMILEY: And they have his number. And the American people want to see the president fight.
WELKER: Now some critics are calling on the president to cancel his vacation to the upscale island of Martha's Vineyard later this month. The White House says that's not in the cards right now, nor is calling Congress back from their five-week recess.
Pres. OBAMA: The last thing we need is Congress spending more time arguing in DC.
WELKER: And tonight the president is attending two fundraisers in New York . Tickets for each, $35,000. When asked if these fundraisers might give the wrong impression, the White House press secretary said Americans understand that politicians need to raise money. Brian :
WILLIAMS: Kristen Welker at the White House . Chuck Todd before that in Iowa . Thank you both.