To be Republican is to have no inner core, no guiding principles, no ethics, no integrity and no basic philosophy (except tax cuts) no intent other than win at all costs.
They do not care about the people, jobs lost, mortgages foreclosed or the jobless losing their unemployment benefits.
Republicans are interested only in winning regardless of how it is done. Whatever methods, no matter how unscrupulous or duplicitous, whatever strategy for the moment is employed, defeat of the opposition is all that matters.
There is no such thing as bi-partisanship. That is a ruse and the naïve belief held by the present occupant in the White House.
When Mitch McConnell (R. KY), the Senate Minority Leader said just prior to the recent mid-term elections, "The single most important thing we want to achieve is for President Obama to be a one-term president"  , he unmistakably revealed what Republicans are all about. And it isn't about enacting legislation, extolling policies that they believe could alleviate this jobless recovery or anything that could be seen or interpreted as being in the public interest. It was simply defeat the president.
So their reality is to oppose, obstruct, delay, denigrate, mislabel and certainly not act in bi-partisanship with this president or any Democrat proposals. As we have witnessed these past two years the intent is to cast everything as "Socialist", liberal extremism, "Europeanization", expansion of the federal government, runaway debt, "Obamacare" ad infinitum.
To Republicans whether there is any truth to these allegations is completely irrelevant. Dissembling of the truth doesn't matter; only winning matters.
Meanwhile Obama and the Democrats in Congress are not only timid and weak kneed in response to Republican innuendos; they fail to comprehend the absolute ruthlessness of the opposition. The Republicans (and their tea party brethren) are at war while the Democrats remain boy scouts (or girl scouts). They fail to understand the ruthless entity they are dealing with.
To be ruthless means take no prisoners. War is nothing less than total. There is no reconciling with such an enemy.
Two Democrat presidents, Franklin Roosevelt and Harry Truman knew their Republican opposition, acted accordingly and took their case directly to the people and succeeded in getting legislation enacted over Republican opposition (Roosevelt) or beating them at the polls by casting them correctly as "do nothings" (Truman).
Even Lyndon Johnson as president was afraid of potential Republican taunts and assaults on their labeling him as being "soft on Communism". Johnson was more concerned with right wing assaults if he didn't escalate the war in Viet Nam in 1965 than if he withdrew from that war. He acted against his own instincts which brought disastrous consequences.
Consider; a little more than two short years ago Barack Obama's election was a landslide victory, a mandate for change. Democrats held a 50 plus seat majority in the House and a soon to be filibuster proof 60 to 40 margin in the Senate. It has all gone up in smoke. Obama and the Democrats squandered their mandate.
Instead of Obama being the populist and appealing directly to the voters who elected him, he failed to use his considerable rhetorical skills and the president's "bully pulpit" to rally the people behind him to bring the reform he highlighted in his campaign and rectify the excesses of his predecessor i.e. close Guantanamo, investigate those officials who authorized torture, the warrantless wiretapping, extraordinary rendition, suspension of habeas corpus, ending our wars and reducing the ravages of the great recession on the people by initiating massive public works programs, curbing mortgage foreclosures and keeping people in their homes.
Instead he ceded the megaphone to the right wing "tea partiers" while holding to his ill conceived notion of bipartisanship (with those who were out to destroy him).
As to the Democrat majorities in both Houses, they became complacent and particularly in the Senate where they ignored the need to amend the filibuster rule and let the McConnell led minority, obstruct, delay, water down and demonize all Democrat proposals.
Obama and the Democrats failed to fully comprehend the ruthlessness of their Republican opponents.