Just over a year ago, President Obama debated House Republicans at their retreat in Baltimore, Md. The session lasted about an hour and a half, and covered several issues -- particularly the health care bill, which was at the time imperiled by Republican Sen. Scott Brown's special election victory in Massachusetts.
Read More →
About halfway through, Obama scolded Republicans for characterizing the legislation -- which was inspired by Republican policy ideas -- as a "Bolshevik plot." That was politics, but, he warned, overblown rhetoric like that would make it difficult for the two parties to come to an agreement on anything.
"[W]e've got to close the gap a little bit between the rhetoric and the reality," Obama said. "[I]f the way these issues are being presented by the Republicans is that this is some wild-eyed plot to impose huge government in every aspect of our lives, what happens is you guys then don't have a lot of room to negotiate with me."