If politics is the art of the possible, then compromise is the soul of democracy. In the deal he proposed to extend the Bush-era tax cuts (now signed into law), President Obama reminded his critics on both sides of the aisle that the refusal to compromise can make everyone worse off. It privileges the status quo – in this case an earlier status quo that virtually no one wanted.
Gutmann, Amy, and Dennis F. Thompson. "Is There Room for Political Compromise in an Era of Permanent Campaigning?" Christian Science Monitor, January 4, 2011.