By Amie Parnes - 07/30/14 12:54 PM EDT
President Obama asked Republicans to stop “hating” and “being mad all the time” during a Wednesday speech in Kansas City, Mo., focused on the economy.
The president accused GOP lawmakers of needlessly suing him, instead of doing their jobs. He said they should be more focused on the economy.
“They have not been that helpful,” Obama told a crowd in a local theater. “They have not been as constructive as I would have hoped and these actions come with a cost.”
The House is set to vote later on Wednesday on legislation authorizing a lawsuit against Obama over his use of executive actions, particularly to delay ObamaCare’s employer health insurance mandate.
Obama highlighted the administration's successes in boosting the economy, saying that his administration caused the bounce-back reflected in statistics released Wednesday that showed 4 percent growth in the second quarter.
He noted that the 6.1 percent unemployment rate is the lowest since September of 2008. But he blamed Republicans for preventing him for doing more for every day Americans.
“We could do so much more if Congress would come on and help out a little bit,” he added. “Stop being mad all the time. Stop. Stop just hating all the time. C'mon … I know they're not happy that I'm president but that's okay. I got a couple of years left. C'mon … then you can be mad at the next president.”
The president slapped the GOP for the lawsuit. “Instead of suing me for doing my job, I want Congress to do its job.”
Republicans have criticized the administration for holding back the economic recovery, and have ripped the White House for not backing any GOP jobs bills.
But Obama used his speech on Wednesday mostly to highlight the progress that has been made to keep the economy on the upswing during his administration. He pointed to the uptick in construction and manufacturing and even affordable healthcare.
It is a message Obama will likely continue to tout as a legacy item, White House aides say, should the economy continue to improve.
“We have fought back,” Obama said. “We have dusted ourselves off. … None of this is an accident. It's thanks to the decisions we made early on.”
— This story was updated at 1:12 p.m.