Obama: 2012 likely referendum on 'vision of America'

President Obama said Tuesday that he expects continued "resistance" from Republicans that will turn the months leading up to the next election in 2012 into a struggle.

"This next election very well may end up being a referendum on whose vision of America is better," Obama said in a radio interview with "The Tom Joyner Show."

Obama said that his strategy, if faced with continued resistance in Congress, would be to mobilize the American people by “going on the road and talking to folks” directly in order to best communicate his plans and his vision.

“If [the American people] see one side not willing to work with the other to move the country forward, then that’s what elections are all about,” Obama said.

“This [resistance] has been a problem for two and a half years now,” he said. Obama named several policies that his administration has been able to push through despite Republican opposition, including the healthcare reform bill, more money for the Pell Grant program and attempts “to fix the financial system.”

“These folks so far have not been very responsive to public opinion ... which is why they are very unpopular right now,” Obama said, without specifically naming Republicans in Congress. Congress overall faces a disapproval rate of 82 percent, but recent polls suggest that Americans are increasingly blaming Republicans for congressional gridlock.

“We’ve just got to keep on putting the pressure on,” Obama said. “We’re going to be in a struggle for probably the next 16, 17 months.”

Host Joyner has contributed to both Obama's 2008 presidential campaign and his current re-election fund.

--This post was updated at 4:13 p.m.