What Obama Should Say to Congress Tonight

How about looking the GOP in the eye and saying, “Don’t like me? I don’t like you, either.”

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4. President to Congress: “I get it: You don’t like me. I don’t like you, either.” But, you know what? The American people—based on the latest polling numbers—don’t like either one of us. So, how’s about we set all that aside and get some stuff done? And maybe here’s where the president does something unprecedented but very with-the-times and rolls out a PowerPoint of slides showing just how unproductive Congress has been these past several years—and have a huddle about what they can do to turn it around.

5. You were bombing everyone, and look where that got us. The president finds himself harassed and heckled to no end over his bold move to actually do something no one’s done for more than 30 years: talk to the Iranians. This historic plan—we’re still waiting on the final details—and the simplicity with which it has been executed is short of remarkable, considering it didn’t cost us a trillion and counting to get them to see it “our way.” And this is the cheaper route: Republicans can’t whine about mounting national debt, yet want to bomb Middle Eastern folks into submission every time something goes wrong. That gets expensive after a while. So why not just frame the argument like that?

Charles D. Ellison is a veteran political strategist and frequent contributor to The Root. He is also Washington correspondent for the Philadelphia Tribune and chief political correspondent for Uptown magazine. You can reach him via Twitter.