Throughout 2009 and much of 2010, Republican strategists were amazed by what they saw on Capitol Hill. Democrats had just won a big election and knew the public was eager for them to work on economic recovery. So what did Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid do? They pushed their party's top priority, national health care, instead of the public's top priority.
At the time, Republican insiders said things like, "Any day you're not talking about jobs and the economy is a day you're on the wrong topic." Throughout 2010, Republicans campaigned on the platform of creating jobs and economic growth, along with the repeal of Obamacare, which they characterized as a job-killer. The message was clear: Jobs, jobs, jobs.