President Obama responds to Chip Reid's question as to whether Sen. Specter's defection from the Republican party is a "game changer" and if the President is going to be able to "run roughshod" over the GOP.
I do think that, to my Republican friends, I want them to realize that me reaching out to them has been genuine. I can't sort of define bipartisanship as simply being willing to accept certain theories of theirs that we tried for eight years and didn't work and the American people voted to change.
But there are a whole host of areas where we can work together. And I've said this to people like Mitch McConnell . I said, look, on health care reform, you may not agree with me that I -- we should have a public plan. That may be philosophically just too much for you to swallow.
On the other hand, there are some areas like reducing the costs of medical malpractice insurance where you do agree with me. If I'm taking some of your ideas and giving you credit for good ideas, the fact that you didn't get 100 percent can't be a reason every single time to oppose my position.
And if that is how bipartisanship is defined, a situation in which basically, wherever there are philosophical differences, I have to simply go along with ideas that have been rejected by the American people in a historic election, you know, we're probably not going to make progress.
If, on the other hand, the definition is that we're open to each other's ideas, there are going to be differences, the majority will probably be determinative when it comes to resolving just hard, core differences that we can't resolve, but there is a whole host of other areas where we can work together, then I think we can make progress.
Dave N.: Well, as long as the GOP is the Limbaugh National Committee, I'm afraid the former scenario is going to reign. Remember how The Great Gasbag himself defined it in his Sermon From the CPAC Mount earlier this year:
Limbaugh: Bipartisanship occurs only after one other result, and that is victory. In other words, let's say as conservatives liberals demand that we be bipartisan with them in Congress. What they mean is: We check our core principles at the door, come in, let them run the show and agree with them. That's bipartisanship to them. To us, bipartisanship is them being forced to agree with us after we politically have cleaned their clocks and beaten them. And that has to be what we're focused on.