Mistake happened in 2010 by GOP fighting for the continuation of Bush tax rates. Now this is the best anyone can do - avoid the fiscal cliff by compromising for a new tax bracket.
The poor and middle class voters expect us to fight for their pocketbook issues while casting their vote on straw man issues set up by the left. Had the GOP done nothing to extend the Bush tax rates, Romney would have won the presidency because the economy would have been tighter and the people would have voted with their pocketbooks. The GOP could have had a meaningful campaign of bringing back the Bush era the tax rates after winning the white house.