Obama Rides with Teddy Roosevelt in Osawatomie | KCUR

Obama Rides with Teddy Roosevelt in Osawatomie

Dec 4, 2011

President Barack Obama is scheduled to be in Osawatomie Kansas Tuesday, and the speech he’ll give there could mark a tougher approach to his ongoing fight with congressional Republicans.


The president is coming to Osawatomie because Teddy Roosevelt delivered an important speech there 101 years ago.   That one called for a “New Nationalism”, and defended the government’s role in regulating the economy, defending human welfare and property rights.  Whitehouse deputy press secretary Josh Earnest says Obama will channel Teddy Roosevelt in Osawatomie tomorrow.

“The president is going to talk about his vision for America, where everyone engages in fair play, everyone does their fair share, and everyone gets a fair shot,” said Earnest.

The President is scrapping with Republicans over his proposal to extend the payroll tax holiday, and, this week especially, to approve his nominee to run the new Consumer Financial Protection Bureau.    Earnest says president Obama will frame his arguments in the language of Teddy Roosevelt.   

“The kinds of arguments that he’ll be making in Kansas dovetail very nicely with the importance if leveling the playing field, and making sure that middle class families get a fair shot in this difficult economy.   One of the most important things we can do to further that goal is to have a fully staffed Consumer Financial Protection Bureau,” according to Earnest.

President Obama’s nominee to head the CFPB, Richard Cordray, could be blocked in the Senate Thursday.  

Last week Doris Kerns Goodwin, the Pulitzer Prize winning historian, suggested the president switch from trying to stay above the fray to a more Teddy Roosevelt-type attack, centered on “fairness”.

Osawatomie is 50 miles from downtown Kansas City.   It was a Free State, Abolitionist, bastion in the in the “Bleeding Kansas” years before the Civil War.   John Brown lived, and fought there.