President Barack Obama looks to strike contrast with GOP in KC visit

KANSAS CITY, Mo. - President Obama hopes to strike a powerful contrast with GOP antagonists in a speech Wednesday in Kansas City, presenting himself as the sensible leader focused on bread and butter issues, while Republicans focus only on partisan sniping, the president’s top spokesman told 41 Action News.

"I think the president highlighting his own economic policies tomorrow will stand in pretty stark contrast to what house Republicans have planned tomorrow," White House press secretary Josh Earnest said.

"They're actually going to take a vote on whether they should file a lawsuit, a taxpayer funded lawsuit, against the president of the United States just for doing his job," Earnest said of House Republicans.

RELATED: Complete coverage of President Obama's visit to Kansas City

The proposed lawsuit , which has been working its way through the House of Representatives, targets the president's decision not to enforce portions of the Affordable Care Act, which they also oppose.

"I think what will be on display tomorrow is a pretty clear difference in the priorities that are being advanced by House Republicans and the priorities that the president is fighting for," Earnest said.

Those priorities will be largely reflected in the dinner guests whom the White House has invited to join President Obama Tuesday night.

Each wrote a letter to the president sometime in the last few years, and each letter reportedly discussed different economic issues related to the Obama administration’s priorities including improving health care, lowering student debt and creating jobs.

"It’s just a snap-shot," Earnest explained of the dinner. "There's nothing scientific about the individuals the president will meet with [Tuesday], but the president feels it’s important to not just talk to ... the policy wonks, and to the partisans, but that we're actually talking to real people and make sure that he's in touch with how real people are affected by some of these policies."

The time and location of the dinner will remain a secret until the president arrives, but Earnest, a KC native, said he did offer the president a few recommendations, including options for barbecue.

The president visited the famous Franklin's BBQ shack in Austin, Texas, on a similar recent trip. Would he judge KC's best against a Texas staple?

"My guess is that he's going to say I'm not claiming a favorite, I just want to make sure that I'm tasting some of the best," Earnest said. "And hopefully if things go right he'll have a chance to do at least some of that on this trip."

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