James Pethokoukis

Politics and policy from inside Washington

Are Obama’s healthcare troubles actually a good thing?

August 24, 2009

Mickey Kaus gives his theory:

It’s easy to forget that, even if Obama’s health care effort is bogging down, the effort itself still serves his presidency as a crucial time-waster, tying up Congress and giving him a reason to postpone (or the public a reason to ignore) those other divisive, presidency-killers. Obama needs some excuse for putting off unpopular Democratic demands; health care’s a good one. If he keeps failing to pass health care until spring, that might not be such a bad outcome. In fact, even quick passage was maybe never in his interest. There are things more unpopular than struggling. … Cap and trade, immigration legalization, “card check”—these are not what you’d call confidence building appetizers leading up to the main course of Obama’s presidency.

Me: None of it works when Americans have less and less confidence in Obama. And that number will continue to work against him as long as unemployment stays high.

Comments

I suspect you might be right. Obama has probably studied the Tony Blair tactic of smoke and mirrors. It might fool the masses but it’s arguably not going to do much for the nation in the long – or even short – term, but it seems to be what politicians pass of for “leadership” in the 21st century. It’d be nice to have a rewind button so we could go back to 1999 and have another go at it.

Posted by Peter H | Report as abusive
 

So, the concept espoused here is this: Even though Obama-Pelosi-Reid Health Care is extremely unpopular, there are items still on the Obama “TO-DO” list which are EVEN MORE UNPOPULAR? And so maybe it’s a good thing the Health Care debate continues ad nauseum? Good for who?

Certainly NOT GOOD for the nation, which does need rational health care changes. Certainly not good for Obama-Pelosi-Reid, who are looking like morons leading a parade of fools.

Obama was elected at a time of grave national peril — peril from the US/World economy, from international terrorism, and from our over-reliance upon foreign oil, to name just three.

We cannot afford to continue to muddle around with terribly divisive far-left ideas when we have severe issues facing the nation. Obama needs to abandon the far left horse he is riding, and begin operating from the center (as Bill Clinton quickly learned to do), so that the great issues which imperil our nation can be dealt with in a cooperative, bi-partisan fashion (as Obama promised he would do during his campaign.)

Posted by Mike | Report as abusive
 

Democrapic policies – from illegal amnesty, to card check, to “the fairness doctrine”, to health care, to affirmative action quotas, to lawyers for terrorists, to tax hikes – are all disasters for the US and unpopular.
It just goes to show that the health and happiness of America is not their primary concern – buying votes from special interest groups is.

Posted by allisonw | Report as abusive
 

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