NY Times columnist Timothy Egan wrote an article in today's paper about House Representative Dennis Kucinich (D-Ohio) and the end of his opposition to health care reform. When President Obama accompanied Representative Kucinich on Air Force One to his district in Ohio for a rally, he used the Presidential "Power to Persuade" to get Kucinich's vote. The plane ride helped:
"Until the last minute, it looked like even an executive sky ride would not move the pure heart of Dennis Kucinich. When you’ve seen a U.F.O., as Kucinich says he has, a mere lobbying session at 32,000 feet by the Leader of the Free World, urging you to join your party in a cause that has eluded Democratic presidents since Franklin Roosevelt, is a tough match. But let’s give him credit — he swallowed his pride and switched. Obama may not yet have the defining legislation of his presidency on his desk, but he’s already pulled off a small miracle: getting the holier-than-thou purists of his party to realize that they have to govern every now and then."
Full text of the article can be found here: http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2010/03/17/the-purists/?hp