Obama tells freshman Dems to consider how to pay for progressive policies

Former President Obama reportedly had words of advice or a group of freshman Democrats late Monday at a private event in Washington where he warned about pursuing bold ideas without plans for implementing them

According to The Washington Post, which cited sources at the event, Obama counseled new members of Congress from his party on making change in the halls of Capitol Hill.


“He said we [as Democrats] shouldn’t be afraid of big, bold ideas — but also need to think in the nitty-gritty about how those big, bold ideas will work and how you pay for them,” one attendee told the Post.

“He was speaking to staying in touch with your constituents,” added Rep. Haley StevensHaley Maria StevensThe 31 Trump districts that will determine the next House majority WHIP LIST: Pelosi seeks path to 218 MORE (D-Mich.), who previously served in the Obama administration, according to the newspaper. “Making sure you’re doing the regular communications as well as [recognizing] that there’s oftentime nuances to policymaking and that it takes time.”

Obama also reportedly praised Speaker Nancy PelosiNancy Patricia D’Alesandro PelosiThe Hill’s Morning Report – Presented by Pass USMCA Coalition – Dems look for traction following Barr-Mueller findings Democrats face dilemma after Mueller probe ends Raskin embraces role as constitutional scholar MORE (D-Calif.), whom he celebrated as a tough fighter for Democratic policies.

“The reason I love Nancy is because she combines a passion for doing what’s right for our country and our kids, along with a toughness that can’t be matched on the Hill,” the former president said, according to the Post.

The remarks were reportedly seen by some at the gathering as caution against plans for bold progressive ideas such as the Green New Deal and Medicare for all, which critics have said are too costly.

Freshman Democrats such as Rep. Alexandria Ocasio-CortezAlexandria Ocasio-CortezOmar controversy looms over AIPAC conference Senate gears up for Green New Deal vote Overnight Energy: Green New Deal vote set to test Dem unity | Renewables on track to phase out coal, study finds | EPA chief reportedly recuses himself from mine review MORE (D-N.Y.) have espoused support for such positions in recent months while challenging party leadership on issues such as health care, policy toward Israel, and other areas of dispute.