President Obama told supporters in a video message Thursday that their frustration with the "pace of change" during his time in office is a reason not to pull back but rather to redouble efforts for his reelection.
Obama acknowledged that some of his liberal supporters have felt "impatient" over the administration's follow-through on some 2008 campaign promises.
"I know that a lot of you who were involved in the campaign earlier, over the last two years, you've probably felt some frustration," Obama said in a Web video posted Thursday to his campaign account. "There's been some times where you wanted Washington to change a lot more quickly than it has, and it keeps on slipping into those same old bad habits."
Liberals have expressed some frustration with Obama's compromises with Republicans to extend Bush-era tax cuts for two years and on a 2011 budget that slashed tens of billions in spending from the budget. Obama also reversed himself on his pledge to close the military prison at Guantánamo Bay, Cuba; his administration relented to opposition earlier this month, and agreed to hold military tribunals for suspected terrorists, instead of criminal trials in the U.S.
The president has faced down some of those disenchanted supporters as he begins his reelection campaign. Protesters interrupted one of his speeches Wednesday night at a fundraiser in New York City, complaining of his work to address HIV/AIDS.
Obama said his supporters' frustrations should give them cause, though, to work even harder for him and Democrats in the 2012 elections.
"If you've been feeling impatient — and I understand that — if you're feeling frustrated sometimes, that shouldn't be a reason to pull back," he said. "That's a reason for us to get even more involved."