Think Obama’s just started reaching out to Republicans? Wrong. He just wasn’t that successful at it before. The president’s associates say that Obama could have tried harder to engage the other side on bipartisan issues in the past (inviting members of the GOP to screen Lincoln—which none attended—failed). They blame his reserve on a few things: personality, commitment to being a family man, and “little appreciation for the aura of the presidency.” He is trying harder now, though. Obama will head to the Capitol to hash out a budget policy. In the past, Republicans may have been resistant to cooperating with him in fear of being too close to a president that the conservative base didn’t like.
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