White House credits higher approval ratings to lame-duck success

White House press secretary Robert Gibbs said Monday President Obama's approval ratings are climbing because the public likes what he accomplished during last year’s lame-duck session — and how he accomplished it.

With polls showing Obama rebounding from November's midterm shellacking to approval ratings in the low 50s, Gibbs credited bipartisan cooperation that led to a productive end-of-year congressional session.

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"The message that the American people had delivered in the election was that both sides have a stake in governing this country and both sides should put aside politics and game-playing to sit down and try to solve the biggest, most vexing problems that we have," Gibbs said.

Gibbs continued: "I think … in the lame-duck session, you saw that, whether it was on taxes, whether it was on things like START, whether it was on issues like food safety or what have you, ‘Don’t ask, don’t tell,’ people put aside game-playing and broad bipartisan majorities made progress on behalf of the American people."

Gibbs said the public is rewarding Obama for leading a results-oriented, bipartisan effort that is "a pretty good road map on a whole host of issues as we move forward."

"I think the American people saw two groups sitting down at a big table and figuring out how to solve our problems," Gibbs said. "And I think because of that people have reacted positively to the progress that has been made — and not just the overall impact of it, but how we went about doing it."