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President Obama / Carolyn Kaster, AP

When it comes to working with Republicans in a second term, President Obama cites a non-elected factor: The news media, particularly the conservative media.

"One of the biggest factors is going to be how the media shapes debates," Obama told The New Republic magazine in an interview.

"If a Republican member of Congress is not punished on Fox News or by Rush Limbaugh for working with a Democrat on a bill of common interest, then you'll see more of them doing it." Obama said.

For example, the president said House Speaker John Boehner, R-Ohio, wanted to do a major debt reduction deal in 2011, but couldn't for two reasons: His fellow House members were so conservative and, "he is vulnerable to attack for compromising Republican principles and working with Obama."

The same dynamic happens among Democrats, Obama said, but "I think the difference is just that the more left-leaning media outlets recognize that compromise is not a dirty word.

"And," he added, "I think at least leaders like myself -- and I include (Senate Majority Leader) Harry Reid and (House Democratic leader) Nancy Pelosi in this -- are willing to buck the more absolutist-wing elements in our party to try to get stuff done."



Copyright 2014 USATODAY.com

Read the original story: President says news media can promote partisanship

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