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Sunday, February 20, 2011

Why Wisconsin matters for Obama

President Obama knows that the ongoing budget protests in Wisconsin are just round one in the national battle for control of the budget message. So he's reportedly sent his outside political team, Organizing for America, to help build even larger crowds.

It's something that drew ire from House Speaker John Boehner on Friday.

"His political organization is colluding with special-interest allies across the country to demagogue reform-minded governors who are making the tough choices that the president is avoiding," Boehner said in a statement. "Rather than inciting protests against those who speak honestly about the challenges we face, the president and his advisers should lead."

White House aides note that in his interview with Wisconsin television station WTMJ, the president did say that leaders at all levels will have to work to make touch choices.

"Everybody's got to make some adjustments to new fiscal realities," Obama said. "We had to impose, for example, a freeze on pay increases for federal workers."

But Republicans say the president started the week at his news conference urging both parties to an "adult conversation" about how to pay for expensive government programs.

Obama, though, is ending the week helping to whip up the kind of protests and outrage that may make it harder to find bipartisan solutions to these budget messes, they charge. (Read full story at CNN)

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