Rep. Allen West (R-Fla.) criticized President Barack Obama Thursday for "living in some type of fantasy world."
“What the president is proposing is not pragmatic whatsoever and it really is a reflection of him, I suppose, living in some type of fantasy world,” West said on Fox News. “We’re telling the American people that they have to tighten their bootstraps, but we don’t seem to want to do that in Washington, D.C."
West's criticism comes as Obama prepares to meet with top leaders of Congress with hopes of making a limited fiscal deal before the new year. The AP reports:
The Friday afternoon meeting among congressional leaders and the president – their first since Nov. 16 – stood as a make-or-break moment for negotiations to avoid across-the-board first of the year tax increases and deep spending cuts.
Obama called for the meeting as top lawmakers alternately cast blame on each other while portraying themselves as open to a reasonable last-minute bargain.
Senate Democratic Leader Harry Reid all but conceded that any effort at this late date was a long shot. "I don't know timewise how it can happen now," he said.
For Obama, the 11th-hour scramble represented a test of how he would balance the strength derived from his re-election with his avowed commitment to compromise. Despite early talk of a grand bargain between Obama and House Speaker John Boehner that would reduce deficits by more than $2 trillion, the expectations were now far less ambitious.
West also denied being "idiotic" enough to agree with those who think Obama should raise taxes because of campaign promises.
“I have to tell you that I’m not such an idiotic person where I’m going to follow someone off into the abyss," West said. "This is a horrible political gimmick that the president ran on."