The president and his advisers believe that a grand budget deal would help an economy that is poised to take off. Recent economic data, including February's strong jobs numbers, confirm their view that economic conditions are on the upswing. If the president can contribute to fixing the budget mess, consumers and companies will spend more and the economy will blossom. The president would be able to claim he revived the economy after the worst downturn since the Great Depression. A grand bargain would also allow him to say that even though everyone thought Washington was broken, he was able to forge a deal that tackled a problem people tell pollsters they care the most about.
Now, let's consider the glory associated with the outreach-as-trap theory. If the endgame were to win the 17 Democratic seats necessary for Democrats to take control the House—a few seats won’t do—that would be an accomplishment, but not really one to light up the history books. More important, it wouldn't reflect direct glory on Obama.The comments are the usual Slate stuff about how Republicans don't want to work with Obama because they're evil and he's black.