This is an important point:
In what liberals are sure to describe as a fit of denial, [House Budget Chairman Paul] Ryan argues that Republicans are actually “much better positioned” to advance conservative policy alternatives during Obama’s second term than they were during the 2012 campaign. He predicts that once Americans begin to feel the practical effects of Obama’s policies, many of which have yet to be fully implemented, they will “yearn” for change. Voters may have endorsed such policies in theory, but according to Ryan, they are in for a rude awakening when Obamacare and other aspects of the president’s agenda take full effect over the next couple of years.
“I think it’s different now that the rubber is hitting the road with respect to Obama’s policies,” Ryan says. “We ran against the Obama policies before they were implemented. Obama was able to protect them with his rhetoric, but he was never measured against his results. Now, in the second term, they’re implementing these things, they’re putting details in writing, regulations are coming out, and we’re seeing just how different these proposals are than the rhetoric that was used to sell them.”
Ryan also notes that it wasn’t just the the President who won re-election in 2012; so did the House. I’ll add that right now it looks highly unlikely that the House will flip in 2014, either. All of which means that anybody who wants to be serious about fixing our fiscal mess had better start contemplating the facts on the actual ground. Starting with the basic detail that what’s part of the battlespace now is going to be part of the battlespace until at least 2017. Conservatives don’t really want to hear that because it means that we have to accept Obama’s just-passed tax hikes as permanent. Liberals don’t want to hear that because it means that they have to accept that their signature issue – Obamacare – is widely considered by the American people to suck so bad that it should die in a grease fire. Neither side wants to hear that because it means that the end result is not going to be either side’s wish list.