On the night of Barack Obama’s inauguration nearly four years ago, more than a dozen Republican lawmakers met privately to map a strategy on how they would deal with the new president. The consensus was that they would stonewall him at every turn.
Rep. Kevin McCarthy was quoted as saying: ”We’ve gotta challenge them [Obama and the Democrats] on every single bill.”
GOP politicians were encouraged to mount “unyielding opposition” to every proposal emanating from the White House.
Jamelle Bouie of The American Prospect characterized the strategy thusly:
In other words, there was nothing President Obama could have done to build common ground ...