During the health-care summit, both Obama and Biden tried to make the point that both Republicans and Democrats agree that there should be some government regulation of health care; they're just disagreeing about exactly how much. As they observed, GOP members of Congress have signed on to certain kinds of regulation (the popular kinds), like ending recissions (where your insurance company kicks you off your policy when you get sick) and even outlawing denials for pre-existing conditions, which is a large change with serious implications.
At today's Health Care Smackdown ("You'll pay for the whole seat -- but you'll only need the edge!") and in the postmortems, both sides will likely charge that the other side is being dishonest about their intentions. Democrats will say that Republicans are pretending that they are open to reform, but all they really want is to kill the bill, for reasons both substantive (they don't particularly think health care should be reformed) and political (they don't wantDemocrats to get a victory). For their part, Republicans will charge that Democrats pretend they are open to bipartisanship, but in truth they just want to pass their bill, and they don't care whether Republicans come along or not.
NPR today, engaging in a shameless act of journalism, gives us some context on just how crazy and unprecedented it would be for Democrats to use the budget reconciliation process to enact changes to a piece of health-care legislation that has passed both houses of Congress (provided they can get the House to pass the Senate's version of health-care reform, this is the strategy Democrats will probably pursue to improve on the Senate's bill). Republicans are shocked, shocked that their opponents would contemplate such a thing -- after all, it's one thing to pass enormous tax cuts aimed at the wealthy through reconciliation, as they did when George W.