Michael Tomasky runs some GOPspeak through a debullshitter gizmo:
When Republicans say Obama needs to show "leadership," what they mean is that he ought to just embrace the Ryan budget. They really won't accept anything else.... There is nothing Obama can do to please them except drop entirely his demand for revenue, which would be indefensible on political and policy grounds.
The truth of this nugget is incontrovertible. By "leadership" Republicans mean total agreement, and by "revenue" they mean deal-breaker. Theirs is an exquisitely simple negotiating position that even their base can understand, and most of all, appreciate and adore: Praise Jesus, there shall be no negotiating.
It would be wrong to suggest, however--and I'm not suggesting that Tomasky does, but others do--that Republicans are merely being their usual dense selves. For in their prodigious simple-mindedness of "No, a thousand times no" there lies the diabolical brilliance of election nullification. It's as though November never transpired, a national debate never took place, a people's choice was never made; those 18-or-so months of presidential campaigning never really occurred--they, as well as Obama's reelection, have been wiped from the books as functionally superfluous.
Obama is boxed in, trapped in a kind of phantom second-term presidency, and he knows this better than anyone: "I actually just want to govern, at least for a couple of years." Which is about all Republicans know they must neutralize, which they can do by demanding more "leadership" and then rejecting every overture, which renders the presidency as potent as a beached whale and as invisible as Claude Rains.
Obama's keenest supporters as well as garden-variety liberals, progressives, Democrats and centrists can fume and deny this reality all they want. But fuming denial can't change it. It's perfectly legal, impeccably constitutional and, for the short run (which is all Republicans care about), shrewdly political. Republicans sort of lost the last election, but that's OK, they're simply erasing its results.
Still, like the pseudoconservative high Court of 2000, they will I'm sure ask that their electoral nullification not be seen as a precedent; you know, just in case they ever regain the White House.