But he also said Republicans might coalesce around a budget framework developed by Alan Simpson and Erskine Bowles, which would broadly reduce some entitlement spending in return for additional tax revenue.
Democrats and Republicans in the Senate have worked quietly on a similar package this fall.
The country will get a hint about the chances for compromise next week, when Congress returns for a lame-duck session.
It will face decisions on extending all or part of the Bush-era tax cuts, renewing or ending the payroll tax holiday, extending the national debt ceiling and adjusting payment rates for doctors under Medicare. Perhaps the most daunting element of that looming so-called fiscal cliff is known as the sequester automatic spending cuts for defense and non-defense programs that neither Democrats nor Republicans want. Rather, its a poison pill created earlier this year to enforce budget discipline.
A possible answer: a modest, kick-the-can-down-the-road agreement followed by another attempt at a grand bargain on spending and taxes next summer and fall.
I think theres a political advantage for everybody to come to some kind of a deal, said Burdett Loomis, a political science professor at the University of Kansas.
Yoder, though, said hed prefer using the fiscal cliff as a lever to reach a bargain on all outstanding budget issues. If that meant his party would have to bend a bit more following Tuesdays election results, so be it. But the threat of the country tumbling over the edge into another recession could be a powerful incentive for real compromise now rather than later.
I am prepared to be part of a long-term solution that requires give and take from both sides, he said.
Still, few members of Congress seemed willing Wednesday to suggest the era of broken government is over.
Most Republicans, for example, remain bitterly opposed to the Affordable Care Act, or Obamacare, which now moves closer to full implementation. Some refused to back away from attempts to adjust the law despite Obamas victory Tuesday.
Were going to have to look at only repealing parts of it, said U.S. Rep. Vicky Hartzler, a Missouri Republican. Or defunding parts of it. Its still important for individual freedom to pursue making some changes there.
Missouri voters endorsed a proposal Tuesday prohibiting the state from establishing a health insurance exchange under the ACA without legislative approval. Whether state lawmakers will resume that process wasnt immediately clear.
Kansas faces a similar decision. Paperwork for ACA health exchanges is due at the end of the year, although establishment of the insurance marketplaces in states that create them wont take place until next year.
There are also long-term concerns that will need Washingtons focus, including immigration reform, energy policy and foreign affairs, members of both parties noted.
Republicans are expected to pursue a deeper investigation into the deaths of four Americans in an attack on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi, Libya. The House, still under GOP control, maintains its subpoena power.
Congress also faces choices on a new farm bill, which stalled this summer.
The government was too divided to pass it.