Before Barack Obama was president he was an Illinois senator. And while as president he is currently dismayed by Republican attempts to disallow the raising of the nation's debt ceiling, as a senator he voted against raising the ceiling when President George W. Bush made the same request.
But President Obama's Senior Presidential Advisor David Axelrod has a simple explanation for this inconsistency: Senator Obama's vote was "a statement."
Speaking with Washington Post Managing Editor Chris Cillizza in an open forum hosted by Washington Post Live on Saturday, Mr. Axelrod characterized the challenges on the US national debt and budget deficits as "long term" issues.
"There is a legitimate concern about our fiscal situation," Axelrod said. "It is a long term issue, and we are not walking away from our debt obligations."
Axelrod further said that it was absurd of Republican lawmakers to attempt to strong-arm the Democrats and to politicize the debt ceiling question.
However, this is precisely what Barack Obama did when voting as a senator to oppose the raising of the debt ceiling. It was an action that President Obama now regrets, according to a report
posted on the Huffington Post blog site.
The issue is a big one, as it represents a deep divide between the Democratic and Republican parties.
President Obama has also begun to reach out to business executives on the need, as Obama sees it, to raise the debt ceiling.
American CEOs are interested in "keeping some stability in our economy as it slowly moves forward to improve," according to White House Chief of Staff Bill Daley, in a Los Angeles Times report.
"Any sort of chaos in the marketplace affects business, and that affects all of them."