McConnell: Obama most ‘anti-business’ president since Carter

Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-Ky.) slammed President Obama on Wednesday, calling his administration the most anti-business in decades.

Speaking to bankers gathered in Washington, McConnell said the White House has a mindset that says, “If you’re making a profit, you’re up to no good. You must be mistreating somebody.”

“It’s a very, very anti-business administration,” he said. “This is the most anti-business administration at least since Jimmy Carter.”

{mosads}McConnell also reiterated that Republicans plan to use the debt limit as a bargaining chip in their pursuit for changes to entitlement programs.

“The president can anticipate a request from the Speaker and myself” he said. “The problem is there’s an enormous disconnect between … the eligibility for our programs and our demographics.

“We are going to insist that we have this discussion one more time in conjunction with his request of us to raise the debt ceiling.”

McConnell, up for reelection in 2014, was steadfast on Republican priorities going forward, adding that there is “zero chance, none” that Congress would reverse course on the automatic spending cuts from sequestration.

Speaking at the American Bankers Association’s annual summit, McConnell also gave no indication that Republicans were wavering on their blockade of the president’s nominee to lead the Consumer Financial Protection Bureau (CFPB).

The GOP insists it has no problem with the nominee, Richard Cordray, but says the bureau’s structure must be changed. Among the demands are replacing the director position with a bipartisan board and bringing the agency’s funding under the control of congressional appropriators.

CFPB backers have argued the changes are efforts to weaken the bureau, but Republicans argue the changes will bring accountability to an agency they largely oppose.

“I don’t think that’s an unreasonable request,” said McConnell. “If I had my way we wouldn’t have the agency at all.”

McConnell opened his remarks with a joke, saying it was nice to be speaking to an audience of bankers that may be more unpopular than lawmakers.

“It’s a rare opportunity for all of us villains to be in the same room at the same time,” he said to laughter in the room.

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