During the early days in the health care reform effort, the atmosphere was a heady one for Democrats, who for the first time in many years held not only the White House, but also both houses of Congress by solid margins. Consumed by having gained this high degree of power, they saw no need to consult with Republicans to develop a bi-partisan approach to improve the system, because they had the power to do what they wanted to do.
They were unable to resist the temptation to cram everything imaginable into the reform bill, and when they included measures that Republicans found unacceptable, Democrats began calling Republicans obstructionists, giving the clear impression that Republicans simply refused to participate, and only cared about stopping reform.
After locking themselves away and drafting legislation that they knew Republicans couldn’t support, then rejecting Republican proposals to modify the legislation, when Republicans predictably voted against the bill, they called them “the party of ‘No.’ ”
They denounced Republican opposition with comments like, “Republicans don’t want to help people who can’t afford health insurance,” “Republicans oppose health care reform,” and “Republicans want to maintain the status quo.” All of that may make for exciting political theater, but it accomplishes nothing positive.
Health care reform: Democrats locked Republicans out of the process » Columns » Bluefield Daily Telegraph, Bluefield, WV