Trouble for Health Care Reform, Obama
Health care reform is without question the issue of the hour, and Our Readers Who Comment are split right down the middle on two closely intertwined stories that show the impact of that subject on our politics.
Obama haters love a Washington Post-ABC News poll that shows the president's approval ratings have slipped on key issues, especially health care, and attack the president for his planned personal full court press to address that issue. The left offers solace, noting that change is hard, and, of course, pushes for single-payer instead of whatever polyglot reform might eventually emerge, if a program emerges from Capitol Hill at all.
As Dan Balz and Jon Cohen report, Obama's approval rating on health care alone has dropped below 50 percent, and he has notably lost ground among political independents.
Michael D. Shear and Shailagh Murray tell us that "Senior White House aides promise 'an aggressive public and private schedule' for Obama as he presses his case for reform."
First to comments on the poll.
We'll start with jack824, who said, "This is the same problem that anybody seriously confronting major issues is going to face. While people will complain about issues, there is great comfort in the status quo. Bush took a huge hit when he tried to tackle immigration. Clinton when he tried to tackle health care. But problems don't solve themselves. This is what leadership looks like."
Independent4Life wrote, "Obama...would be foolish if all he worried about were his approval ratings by polls. BUT these ratings will continue to go down, down, and down enough to get him out of office in 2012 if he fails the middle class of America on issues like healthcare, employment, and consumer protection."
2229 said, "The same ignorant citizens who allowed Bush and Cheney to subvert the Constitution now seem ready to cave in and whine about health care. This country deserved Bush and Cheney; it deserves the crappy health care system we have now. American Cowards. Our new citizenry."
bfjackjernigan wrote, "For now healthcare can go on the back burner for as long as the numbers of the jobless, homeless and desitute continue to swell his approval ratings will continue to fall."
brucewla asked, "why does big media even bother to run stories like this? still trying to influence events? don't you know that a leftist, authoritarian president could care less about approval polls? you all need to wake up, and get back to reporting the news."
andrewburroughs wrote, "...So long as Obama continues to listen to inside the beltway conformists (such as Geithner and Summers), remains intimidated by rabid conservatives at Fox News, he will continue to fall... I predict one term for Obama unless he starts to stand up for the 53% that voted him into power. So far he is showing a lack of spine, a willingness to compromise (e.g. the stimulus) even if he gets far less than what is required."
Mindboggle said, "...The WaPo says that Obama has "taken on a series of major problems." I do not agree. I believe that he does not like this country in its current form nor its past and wants to change it drastically into something else that the American people do not want. We do not want to mirror a socialist government in Europe."
robstumpf wrote, "The American people may have put Barry into office, but they didn't suddenly become socialists overnight. And Barry's administration has made a very large number of mistakes for your typical Chosen One. All of those people who have predicted the end of the GOP for the last several months are going to have some 'splainin to to do after the next couple of elections."
westcan said, "The headline of this article [Obama Approval Ratings Decline on Central Issues] draws right wing nuts like bees to honey, that why so many rightie postings. What they don't understand is that the numbers are dropping because people feel Obama is not doing enough to get his proposals passed... They have totally missed the point, while Dems and Indies have their eyes right on the ball."
To which NiteOwl1 replied, "...This gal does not agree with you at all. That's the problem with Obama too. Instead of asking us what exactly it is we want--he is so arrogant as to try to "tell" us what we want. He doesn't speak for me and neither do you."
Nutjob comment of the day:
JWx2 wrote, "Hillary would still be waiting to see a doctor for her elbow if she was on obama lame health care...she knows it too and thats why obama sent her out of the country...LOL"
All comments on the poll story are here.
Now to the comments on the health care story:
magellan1 said, "President Obama had better answer the question "What will this healthcare reform legislation do for us?" He can press, twist arms, raise his voice, take his gloves off all he wants but until WE hear what's in it and what's in it for US everything else is just so much hot air."
1April wrote, "Instead of cutting a dealwith his allies, how about cutting a deal with the American people. Work to bring our jobs back, eliminate the outsourcing, restructure the corporate tax codes, we will then tackle healthcare reform."
dnjake said, "...No doubt the thought that health care reform is a difficult test for President Obama is also an accurate assessment. So is the expectation that the outcome remains in doubt. But the difficulty is not likely to be a surprise to the President. Its just that his strategy has been to give the different points of view time to establish their initial positions and to get a better idea of the lay of the land before beginning his serious effort to orchestrate the outcome."
mibrooks27 wrote, "...Any moron can take a look at the proposed legislation and see that the health care industry giveaways will bankrupt us in short order. My best guess is that his loopy crowd of globlization fanatics somehow thinks they can gin up the free trade Ponzi scheme again and pay for it. It wont work and this turkey needs to be sen back to the oven - it's half baked."
ebgill said, "The fight for health care reform was always going to be tough... We should have started the real fight, the one to implement single payer in the first place rather than fight and maybe even lose for this lesser plan."
justathought3 wrote, "If conservative Democrats in the House vote against reform and vote against the President, they can kiss their political careers goodbye. Congress has had 40 years to think this through, and they have done nothing but curry favor with the bloated, bloodsucking bureaucracy that is the health insurance industry in the US. It's time."
Realist20 wrote, "Obama...could sit down with the GOP, who also want a new Health plan, and come up with something that workds well, without increasing the budget deficit - but he won't- he will try his attack-those-that- doubt-him... The people are getting tired of Obama on the TV and/or internet everyday and sending him out will doom the Dems even more in the 2010 & 2012 elections."
We'll close with these opposing viewpoints:
CTSKINSFAN2 said, "Mr. Obama can jawbone... on behalf of his ruinous health care plan. Fact is, the CBO shows his claim that his proposal will lower health care costs while improving care to be a damnable lie. The CBO is credible; Mr. Obama is not..."
Matthew_DC wrote, "Every time the government tries to do anything to correct a breakdown in the free market (as with US healthcare) and take away part of an industry's profits, the fanatics on the right say the same thing. They predicted doom under FDR and thy were wrong. Don't listen to them now..."
All comments on the the health care article are here.
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