Sen. Hoeven: 'You Don't Come and Dictate an Agenda'
(CNSNews.com) - Sen. John Hoeven (R-N.D.) says if President Obama wants to get something done, he has to work with Congress, even if it's not easy: "That's why you get involved and you figure out how to compromise," Hoeven told CNN's "Crossfire" on Monday.
"But he's got to understand that you don't come and dictate an agenda. You offer compromise...And you can't say, 'Oh, it's tough, so I'm going to go off by myself.'"
President Obama has said that he will use his pen and his phone to accomplish as much as he can without congressional input.
White House spokesman Jay Carney said on Monday that President Obama intends to "use his authority as president and the powers available to the president to advance his agenda on behalf of the American people."
Carney said Obama will make it clear in his State of the Union Address that he will work with Congress when "Congress will work with us," but he will use his "authority" when Congress won't work with him. "And that's what I think the American people expect, of him and of the others they send to Washington, to Congress," Carney said.
Hoeven noted that it takes 60 Senators to get anything passed, which means that 15 Democrats must side with the Senate's 45 Republicans. "We've got to work together," he said.
Asked if he would agree to Obama's call to raise the minimum wage, Hoeven said he would "consider working with the president on that, but he's got to come up with a plan where you actually get people back to work. Because if you really want to raise income for people, you've got to -- they've got to get a job."