Bill Maher, the spiritual godfather of Stewart and Colbert, has the Best. Analogy. Ever. to explain the tea-partying GOP's behavior at the dawn of the Obama era:
Look, I get it, "real America." After an eight-year run of controlling the White House, Congress and the Supreme Court, this latest election has you feeling like a rejected husband. You've come home to find your things out on the front lawn -- or at least more things than you usually keep out on the front lawn. You're not ready to let go, but the country you love is moving on. And now you want to call it a whore and key its car.
That's what you are, the bitter divorced guy whose country has left him -- obsessing over it, haranguing it, blubbering one minute about how much you love it and vowing the next that if you cannot have it, nobody will.
But it's been almost 100 days, and your country is not coming back to you. She's found somebody new. And it's a black guy.
The thing that you people out of power have to remember is that the people in power are not secretly plotting against you. They don't need to. They already beat you in public.
In a similar vein, Washington Monthly praised the president for cooling to the idea of an elusive "bipartisanship":
The parties disagree with one another. They want to take the country in very different directions. The majority party will offer proposals, and the minority party will criticize the proposal with varying degrees of rage.
If the White House really is done taking Republican outreach seriously, it's about time.