The next 10 weeks are a make-or-break period for President Obama’s second-term agenda.
He needs quick victories in the Senate on gun control and immigration if he is to build momentum for a fight in the Republican-controlled House — the chief obstacle to his agenda.
Obama and his allies are counting on the Senate to deliver strong bipartisan votes for gun violence and immigration bills to build pressure on Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) to bring the legislation to the House floor for votes. The House is waiting for the Senate to act first before deciding its course of action.
The stakes are high for Obama; David Axelrod, his former chief political adviser, last week called immigration reform a “legacy item” for the president.
As the gun control fight has gone on and Obama’s initial talk of wide-ranging reform has been trimmed and trimmed again, the president has faced renewed criticism over his ability — or inability — to shepherd meaningful legislation through Congress.