20 Jan 2010

Democrats Have Lost the Debate

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David Harsanyi explains that nobody has deceived the American people. Voters simply recognize that the health care bill is not in their interest. It would cause most Americans to pay more for health care and get less. It would result in fewer innovations and rationed services, and the US cannot afford it.

Generally speaking, would you favor smaller government with fewer services, or larger government with more services?

Fifty-eight percent of those polled by The Washington Post recently claimed they preferred smaller government with fewer services, with only 38 percent favoring a larger government with more services (and, yes, it is a terrific struggle not to place ironic quotations marks around the word services).

This is the highest number for the “smaller government” category since 2002. And a full year into President Barack Obama’s term, most polls, and state elections, tell us that the electorate is walking — maybe sprinting? — back from the progressive economic policies that now dominate Washington. …

Democrats continue to persuade themselves that the party’s problem is flawed candidates or poorly communicated messages, as White House spokesman Robert Gibbs conceded this week — because, presumably, the idea of socializing medicine is too nuanced and intellectually rigorous for the average voter to digest.

Hardly. The predicament Democrats face is the opposite. Too many voters appreciate exactly what health care legislation entails.

This is why Congress conducts clandestine negotiations on legislation and trashes promises of transparency. This is why leading Democrats have embraced procedural tricks and senatorial bribery — and now the possibility of “reconciliation,” so they can adjust health care reform and pass it with a 51-vote majority. You’re gonna get it whether you want it or not.

That’s what happens when these Democrats lose a debate. According to the latest NBC News/Wall Street Journal poll, only 33 percent believe the health reform effort is a “good” idea, while 46 percent consider it a “bad” idea — with 55 percent disapproving of Obama on health care.

What’s most striking about this poll is that opposition to Obama’s plan has increased 20 percentage points since April — coinciding, not surprisingly, with the president’s big push to convince us that it’s needed. The more people learn, apparently, the less they like. …

[W]e have one party controlling both houses of Congress — with historically impressive margins. We have an opposition political party Americans have lost confidence in. We have endured a frightening downturn that allowed the far left to advance a menu of stunning regulatory intrusions that would normally be non-starters.

Finally, we have a charismatic and articulate president who, armed with near-national landslide, was given the stage to make his pitch on health care reform.

If, with all that, the progressives could not convince voters that the central cause of their movement was necessary, then it is not a messaging problem, it is not a leadership problem, it is not a Republican problem, it is an idea problem — a terrible idea problem.

One Feedback on "Democrats Have Lost the Debate"

Maggie's Farm

Friday morning…

Not an elite. From Brown:

“If you were to tell me growing up that a guy whose mom was on welfare and parents had some marital troubles, and I had some issues growing up, that a guy from Wrentham would be here standing before you right now and …


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