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Obama's 'Schoolhouse Rock' lesson for Congress

Obama's 'Schoolhouse Rock' lesson for Congress
CNN
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Saturday, August 24, 2013 - 3:56pm

 President Barack Obama invoked a beloved children's cartoon to try to educate Congress on how to pass a budget.

"Maybe you're not old enough to remember 'Schoolhouse Rock'," the president said in an interview with CNN "New Day" anchor Chris Cuomo. "You remember how the bill gets passed? You know the House and the Senate try to work out their differences. They pass something. They send it to me, and potentially I sign it."

"If Congress simply does those two things when they get back," he added. "Then the economy can continue to recover."

His comments came as he expressed frustration with what he described as a glaring lack of action on Capitol Hill.

A longstanding ABC television series that turned 40 years old this year, "Schoolhouse Rock" was created by jazz pianist and vocalist Bob Dorough.

One of the most famous animated shorts teaches youngsters about the legislative process in Washington. A rolled up stack of papers with the nametag, "Bill," sings a catchy song about his long journey from a congressman's desk through the rough-and-tumble world of Congress.

"I'm just a bill. Yes I am only a bill. And I'm sitting here on Capitol Hill," the bill sings.

He laments the lengthy debates that each chamber goes through as they mark up the legislation, all the while crossing his fingers that he'll make it to the president's desk.

"Then I'm off to the White House where I wait in a line, with a lot of other bills for the president to sign. And if he signs me then I'll be a law," he sings. "How I hope and pray that he will. But today I am still just a bill." 

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