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Obama’s Health Care Fixation

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 5:10 pm - March 24, 2010.
Filed under: Obama Health Care (ACA / Obamacare)

Despite the Democrats’ “historic” legislation all but nationalizing our nation’s health care system, the President and his cheerleaders can’t let go of his fixation on health care.  Despite his promise in the wake of Scott Brown’s election to replace Ted Kennedy in the United States Senate (which seems now to have served as a distraction allowing Democrats to focus on developing strategies to ram through their unpopular initiative) to focus on the economy and jobs, President Obama still seems fixated on health care.

Although health care was not the focus of Obama’s campaign, it remains the focus of his Administration.  In an article in yesterday’s New York Times, David Leonhardt reports that health care “did not appear to be his top priority as a presidential candidate.”  And yet, now that it’s passed, the president is planning a “public relations blitz aimed at turning around Americans’ opinion of the health-care bill“:

Reshaping the legislation’s image will take place in three phases, White House aides said: the immediate aftermath; the seven months until the November midterm elections; and the several years that follow, during which many provisions in the measure will gradually take effect.

Driving the message during those periods is the belief among Obama’s top advisers that Republicans have boxed themselves into a corner with unanimous opposition to the legislation and talk of a repeal.

It’s all politics for these guys, the permanent campaign.  The Obama Administration is trying to sell aggressively something they just forced House Democrats to buy.

Why can’t the White House let the bill speak for itself?  I mean, they’ve already got the better part of the media cheering for them and praising its passage?  Why isn’t Obama turning his focus to the economy?  (Hey, wait a minute, given the results so far of his economic recovery act, maybe we don’t want him to turn his attention there.)

Wonder why Obama just can’t let go of this issue.

Campaigning Against Obamacare Not Enough to Secure GOP Victories This Fall

Jules Crittenden nails it:

If conservatives think America is full of rage and Congress will be theirs in November, and they plan on taking that for granted, they might be in for a surprise. November is a long way off. Talking health care for seven months when people have had to listen to it for a year might work, but I doubt it. If it was my campaign to take over Congress, I’d talk fiscal responsibility and government accountability. Everyone will know exactly what you are talking about. Elected leaders that don’t listen, spend too much and think they know better than you do.

The rage and indignant righteousness won’t get it done, either, BTW. They might help. But it will be hard to keep the American public PO’d that whole time. People will get real tired of that, and might decide they’re PO’d at the people who want them to be PO’d all the time. Turning rage into work might work though. Relentless, smart, observant, opportunistic, door-to-door, listening, handshaking, baby-kissing, truck-driving work and taking nothing for granted. Also, to steal a line from an old Dem who knew all of that inside out, Tip O’Neill, don’t forget to ask people to vote for you. People like to be asked. That might do it.

Emphasis added.  Via Instapundit.

Look, poll after poll after poll shows that health care is not nor has it has been (at least since the 2008 election) the most pressing issue to American people.  We are more concerned about the economy, about jobs and about the deficit.  Recall how Democrats pushed the “stimulus” promising it would keep unemployment, now at about 10%, below 8%?  Recall how Obama campaigned on a “net spending cut,” saying, in a campaign ad, that he would “pay for his new spending plans with even bigger spending cuts.

Small government ideas, fiscal responsibility, resonate with the American people.  Yes, Republicans should run against this big government boondoggle, but it should be part of a campaign against big government in general and in favor of real reforms which rely on removing regulatory burdens and not increasing federal expenditures.

The idea is to unleash the entrepreneurial spirit of the American people.  As most new jobs come from small business, so do many new ideas and innovations which improve the quality of not just our health care, but also of other good and services in other industries.

Why Isn’t Paul Ryan Running for Senate?

Whenever I see Paul Ryan speak, I have hope for the future of the GOP.  This intelligent young (he just turned 40) conservative can both articulate broad conservative principles and explain the details of various legislative proposals.  In short, he can apply conservative ideas to the process of governing.

Fewer legislators have so favorably distinguished themselves in the the health care debate than has this fetching Congessman from Janesville, Wisconsin.   With his state’s junior Senator Russ Feingold’s favorable rating on a steady downward trend since the dawn of the Obama Administration, seeing his his approval fall below 50%, now barely above his disapproval, that liberal Democrat is looking increasingly vulnerable in a state which appeared to be moving away from the Democrats in the early 200os.

Why not replace that principled liberal (and apparently very decent guy, being one of the few incumbent Democrats to show respect for his constituents holding different political views than he) with a principled conservative?

Why isn’t Ryan running to replace Feingold?

It appears instead that former Governor Tommy Thompson is readying a Senate bid, preparing to replace Feingold.  While Feingold edges Thompson in the most recent poll, Thompson has led in a number of polls going back to last October.  And while Tommy Thompson would make a fine Senator, Ryan would make a better one.  And as a younger man, he would present a better image of the GOP as the party of ideas for the current and coming generations.

Well, at least with Thompson, we get a leader with  a real record of reform; as Wisconsin’s long-serving Governor, he all but pioneered welfare reform.  But, in a choice of two reformers, I’d prefer the younger, the one who has so distinguished himself in the current debate.

Hey, Kids! How’s That Hope&Change Workin’ For Ya?

Well, well…

Turns out Barack Obama is either a liar or never read the health care bill he so insisted the House pass this weekend before he opened his big yap about it in the first place.

Comes news today that his Stalinization of Health Care Act of 2010 actually doesn’t cover children with pre-existing conditions after all.

He touted yesterday in his signing ceremony:

This year, tens of thousands of uninsured Americans with preexisting conditions, the parents of children who have a preexisting condition, will finally be able to purchase the coverage they need. That happens this year.

But according to the AP:

Under the new law, insurance companies still would be able to refuse new coverage to children because of a pre-existing medical problem, said Karen Lightfoot, spokeswoman for the House Energy and Commerce Committee, one of the main congressional panels that wrote the bill Obama signed into law Tuesday

Got an idea: Next time President Obama chooses to ram through a 2,700-page piece of legislation, how about reading it first!
-Nick (ColoradoPatriot, from TML)

Republican Gubernatorial Candidate Leads in Vermont!?!?!

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 4:31 am - March 24, 2010.
Filed under: 2010 Elections

Of the open gubernatorial seats currently in Republican hands, I thought that those in Hawai’i, Rhode Island and Vermont were most likely to flip.   All three are pretty much blue states, with none, save Vermont, having gone Republican in a presidential election since 1984.

Well, the state which has only elected one Democrat to the United States Senate in the past 150 years maybe be returning to its Republican roots.  Republican Jim Douglas, elected to succeed Howard Dean in 2002, is stepping down.  And now his Lieutenant Governor, “Brian Dubie leads all five of his potential Democratic opponents in the first Rasmussen Reports Election 2010 survey of this year’s race for governor in Vermont.”  And, in each case, by comfortable margins.

Well, technically, Dubie is not Douglas’ lieutenant governor as the Governor and Lt. Governor are elected separately.

Now, this may not be a sign of the Green Mountain State returning to its pre-1980s form, but merely a reflection of the popularity of Mr. Dubie.  Or that of Mr. Douglas who holds a 64% approval rating.  (Memo to Governor Douglas:  Patrick Leahy’s Senate seat is up this fall.)

In any case, here’s something from Vermont which corresponds to polling date from other states:  “The Republican hopeful holds double-digit leads over all of the Democrats among voters not affiliated with either major political party.”  In the Buckeye State, the Republican hopeful holds a 23-point lead over that state’s incumbent Democratic governor among independent voters.

Just like Massachusetts in January and New Jersey and Virginia in November, independents appear to be breaking the Republican ways in bellwethers like Ohio and left-leaners like Vermont.

Condi Backs Carly

Posted by B. Daniel Blatt at 4:08 am - March 24, 2010.
Filed under: 2010 Elections,California politics

Former Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice is backing my gal, Carly Fiorina, to replace Barbara Boxer in the United States Senate:

California needs a representative in the U.S. Senate who is prepared to make the tough decisions necessary to address our most pressing challenges, including job creation and national security. Based on my personal experience, I know Carly is the best person to send to Washington to advocate for the people of our great state in the Senate. . . .  Carly is an experienced and respected leader who has delivered results for those she has served in the midst of immense challenges. I am proud to endorse her today.

In other Carly news, she igned the Club for Growth’s Repeal It pledge, committing to sponsoring and supporting legislation to repeal the government takeover of health care and instead institute reforms that actually lower health care costs without growing government.

Nice to see how my gal has consistently opposed big government initiatives and stood for Reaganite principles of smaller government, individual freedom and reducing regulation in order to unleash the entrepreneurial spirit which made California the Golden State.  A spirit which has been slackened by excessive regulation.