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Frustrated with his inability to obtain legislation from Congress, President Obama recently shifted the focus of policymaking to emphasize steps he could take unilaterally under Article II of the Constitution as head of the executive branch. This initiative follows the model created by President Clinton in 1995 to 1996, when he faced a similar stalemate with the newly elected House Republican majority. Though mocked as playing “small ball,” the Clinton initiatives cleverly targeted smaller constituency groups whose support the president needed – and ultimately received – to gain re-election.

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