Yesterday, over at Politico, Ben Smith reported something that were it about a shift in messaging from a Republican White House, it would be the talk of the three broadcast networks news programs while CNN ran panel discussions on how this was a sign of an Administration in disarray. Instead, right now, it’s only getting some notice on (mostly) right-of-center web-sites.
Key White House allies are dramatically shifting their attempts to defend health care legislation, abandoning claims that it will reduce costs and deficit and instead stressing a promise to “improve it.”
The messaging shift was circulated this afternoon on a conference call and PowerPoint presentation organized by Families USA — one of the central groups in the push for the initial legislation. The call was led by a staffer for the Herndon Alliance, which includes leading labor groups and other health care allies. It was based on polling from three top Democratic pollsters: John Anzalone, Celinda Lake and Stan Greenberg.
Emphasis added. Every American represented by a Democrat who voted for this legislation should ask his Representative or Senator about the White House change of tone. They might report that individuals who pay for their own health insurance have seen premiums skyrocket while large companies will get hit with 9% increase in health costs.
But even so, the fact that they’re now so far in retreat that they’re willing to make rhetorical concessions even on their idiotic core plank about bending the cost curve shows just how worried they are that the GOP (a) will be making big, big gains in November and (b) might just have the public support needed to get a serious pro-repeal movement going among the electorate. This is pure defense.
Watch for the number of Americans favoring repeal to climb above 60% as stay there — as they see their healthcare bills rise and notice how the Democrats change their tone on the “cost curve.”