After a year’s respite, lipstick-wearing pig returns to US politics

September 9, 2009

The lipstick-wearing pig is back, making its annual appearance in the political discourse of the country.

The last time it was out and about, eerily enough, was a year ago Wednesday , tripping from Barack OBAMA/Obama’s tongue as the U.S. senator campaigned for the presidency.

Republicans don’t know what real change is, he told a crowd in Lebanon, Virginia.

“You know, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig,” Obama said. “You can wrap an old fish in a piece of paper called ‘change.’ It’s still gonna stink after eight years.”

The line prompted people to jump to their feet and cheer — apparently taking it as a direct slam at Governor Sarah Palin, the newly minted Republican vice presidential candidate.

A few days earlier, Palin had introduced herself to the Republican National Convention as a hockey mom.

“You know they say the difference between a hockey mom and a pit bull: Lipstick,” she told the convention.

Obama’s pig remark riled the Republican camp and set the tone for an increasingly nasty White House campaign.

USA-POLITICS/PALINThe pig has mostly been in hiding since then. Now it’s back again, making an anniversary appearance Wednesday, this time on the lips of House Minority leader John Boehner.

The target was Obama’s healthcare reform plan, which is in a spot of trouble after a round of Republican criticism during Congress’s August recess.

Obama will try to revive the plan with a speech to a joint session of Congress at 8 p.m.

“I hope he’s been listening to the American people because I think over the course of August they’ve raised their voices loud and clear that they don’t want this massive government takeover of our healthcare system,” Boehner said.

“But it appears,” he said, “that the president’s going to double down tonight and try to put lipstick on this pig and call it something else.”

So that’s Boehner’s view. What do you think of Obama’s healthcare plan? Lipstick on a pig, or change we can believe in?

For more Reuters political, click here.

Photo credits: Reuters/Kevin Lamarque (Obama at a healthcare event in August);  Reuters/Rick Wilking (Women hold up lipstick to greet Palin at a campaign rally Sept. 15, 2008)


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OMG! I actually thought Reuters had something to do with news. I feel so foolish.

Posted by Annette | Report as abusive

As usual, a small minority of ultra-conservate republicans are hoping that by yelling enough, ambushing town halls, and making up as many outrageous lies as possible (death panels, etc) they can take the political discourse hostage and derail reform efforts.

They talk and talk about how they represent the American people, but really they are a small slice… most Americans would agree to serious health care reform, including a public option. But once again we are going to get a worse solution than we deserve thanks to a small bunch of small minded loudmouths.

Posted by Tom | Report as abusive

Nothing more than lipstic on a pig. This plan is designed for government take over. It will take money and services from the hard working people of this contry and give it to those who have lived on their couch or front pourch collecting state or federal funds their whole life and returning absolutly nothing to society.

Posted by Glenn | Report as abusive

You know, I think it’s real disingenuous of Boehner (and other political naysayers) to slam Obama’s plan when he and the rest of the Repugs have no reciprocal offer of a plan to fix the messed up health care system (among other systems in our country that’s messed up). Until the other half of the political spectrum get off of their high-horse and begin working with this administration rather than stalworting every effort, their criticisms and fearmongering will go on deaf ears. If you’re not part of the solution, then you’re part of the problem. In my opinion, neither side are serving America’s best interest with all this political posturing….they are only serving to their own self-fullfilling, arrogant interests, at the public’s expense. Reread the Declaration of Independence and the redresses listed in this declaration have not changed and are more threatening to our national security than any healthcare reform…sad, sad, sad!

Posted by jahlove63 | Report as abusive

Wow. We have a Reuters writer calling Sarah Palin a pig. Talk about desperation. Nothing about health care, well the bill itself is not about health care but geewiz David get a room.

Posted by Harold | Report as abusive

I would ask Glenn if he is employed and has health insurance? Or are you retired with health insurance? Perhaps you are neither, perhaps you have no health insurance. I sure hope you never get sick and if you do you are either very wealthy or a Canadian.
How can something take money from someone when its going to save money and pour those savings into providing coverage for all Americans? You think that the 800,000 or so out of work hard working folks in Michigan are sitting on their couch looking for a handout and free check-ups?
Give your head a shake Glenn your eyes is stuck.
Maybe the USA likes to be the laughing stock of the rest of the industrialized world. 40 million uninsured and still the most expensive health care costs in the world….you can’t blame that on the Chinese..

Posted by PeteKL | Report as abusive

Annette, it’s a blog, get over it. The news is under the orange bar on the left of your screen that says NEWS.

Glenn, if the government comes up with a plan (public option, co-op or whatever) that is better and cheaper than what we pay for now, which is not cheap by the way, I’ll sign up for it. Creating an option for people is a step in getting the insurance companies to control costs and stop denying coverage to people who need it. I’ve said it before, health care and profit margins don’t mix.

And Harold, can’t see where the author calls Palin a pig, try a re-read. If the bill is not about health care Harold then what is it about? Please do enlighten us.

Posted by Eric H | Report as abusive

Hi eric what Obama is promising is like a guy with no money deciding to go to the 7-11 to buy a six pack and saying “well people are always loosing money i will find a twenty dollar bill on the way to the store”it is that simplistic!it is deciding to buy a new car and in spite of being unemployed, reasoning that he should get a job eventually!If you went to a bank for a business loan and your business plan was this vague the bank manger would chase you. This is still the same wishful thinking that he is trying to convince people with ,the stakes are too high for him to predicate all this dept onto us and complain about our nihilism at the same time because we don,t accept the self financing nonsense he is trying to advocate.

Posted by brian lee | Report as abusive

The “American Taliban neo-cons” are such an embarassment to this county and has made the whole world hate the United States Of America. There following is swiftly fading away. Their CHILDISH behavior is a disgrace to American’s everywhere and EVERYONE is begining to realize this.

Posted by merf-1 | Report as abusive