The president spoke to the Republican House retreat in Baltimore on Friday afternoon not because he wanted to but because he had to.

The candidate who preached bipartisanship did not practice it as president during his first year in office. The fact that the president appeared in front of the group and opened the program to the press on Friday may signal a beginning of the "transparency" he has often promised but never practiced in governing.

President Obama has gotten a wake up call from the American people in the recent elections in Virginia, New Jersey and Massachusetts. The people did not like the "change" that Democrats tried to force on a population that did not want it. They did not understand why the economy was being neglected. They did not understand why bills were being voted on that no one had read or understood prior to voting in them.

The president was warmly received by the Republican House Conference. He was heard and I hope he heeds what he heard as well.

Mr. Obama needs to practice what he preaches.

If the president wants support from Republicans he has to abandon the most radical policies from his party in favor of a more centrist approach to governing. Focusing on getting Americans back to work and being fiscally responsible at the same time will gain the president bipartisan support. After all, good governance is good government.

Truth be told, it has not been the Republicans who have caused this president's reversal of fortunes, it has been Democrats.

Bradley A. Blakeman served as deputy assistant to President George W. Bush from 2001 -04. He is currently a professor of Politics and Public Policy at Georgetown University. He is a frequent contributor to the Fox Forum.