WASHINGTON President Barack Obama is promoting his second-term agenda to House Democrats, eager to keep them unified as a bulwark against a Republican majority on issues as diverse as the economy, immigration and guns.
Obama was meeting with Democratic lawmakers Thursday during their retreat in Lansdowne, Va., a day after he held a private session with Senate Democrats at their off-campus conference in Annapolis, Md.
The meetings with legislators from his own party come just days before Obama's State of the Union address next Tuesday to a joint session of Congress. This week's meetings have served as something of a preamble for that nationally televised speech.
Obama was to deliver public remarks to the House members and then take questions in a private session, officials said.
White House officials say that Obama's top priority is job creation and that he will make a case for fiscal policies that encourage economic growth. Setting up a contrast with Republicans who are insisting on spending cuts, not tax increases, to stanch federal red ink, Obama told reporters Tuesday, "We can't just cut our way to prosperity."