Woodward also shows how Obama blew up the summer 2011 grand-bargain negotiations with Speaker John Boehner by suddenly raising his demands. Boehner had already agreed to increased revenues from high earners through tax reform that would eliminate or limit deductions whose benefits go largely to those with high incomes. That’s the kind of tax reform recommended by Obama’s Simpson-Bowles Commission, whose report quickly found its way to his round file. It had the support of congressional Republicans such as vice-presidential nominee Paul Ryan and Republicans on the supercommittee. But, late in the negotiations, Obama insisted on higher tax rates for high earners — proposals that tend to bring in less revenue than forecast — and raised the ante on Boehner…

Obama has spent about half of his career in public office running for other offices. A couple of years after his election to the state senate, he ran for Congress. He lost, and a couple of years later, he ran for the U.S. Senate. Two years after taking office as a senator, he started running for president. And he’s spent a lot of time in this last two years — all those fundraisers! — running again.