Posted by: Rick | Friday, March 19, 2010

The Day After: Defeating Republicans On The Health Care Issue

Some time next week, Democrats are going to pass their health care bill into law.  What will Republicans — obstructionists one and all — do the next day?  They would seem to have four options:

1) Rail against “the process”.  The GOP will undoubtedly want to sputter about “deem and pass” and other allegedly shady legislative procedures.  Unfortunately, only Fox News pundits will be listening.  The public at large won’t care — particularly since the charge itself is so blatantly hypocritical.

2) Claim that wavering Democrats were “bought off” to vote with the leadership.  But without solid proof, the corruption angle won’t work either.  When House Republicans were ramming through Bush’s prescription drug bill, you could actually see Tom DeLay twisting arms live on C-SPAN.  I watched it.  But voters didn’t care — they liked the result.

3) Insist that the country can’t afford Democratic reform.  But the Congressional Budget Office says otherwise — big-time.  And they’re the referees.  End of story.

4) Double down on the “Death Panel” strategy.  Republicans can continue to lie about what’s in the package.  But that will become increasingly difficult as people start noticing that none of the GOP crazy talk about “government takeovers” ever materializes.  Indeed, the vast majority of Americans will see no change in the private insurance they already have.  Meanwhile, Democrats can begin taking credit for instant improvements to the system, such as an end to denial of coverage to children due to pre-existing conditions.

Republicans will use some combination of these approaches as they campaign this fall on a pledge to repeal health care reform.  But here’s the bottom line: They’re still the party of no — and they’re bragging about it!

Democrats will have to work very hard selling voters on what they’ve accomplished.  It won’t be easy, and they’ll need to stay unified and on message.  But I’d much rather be us (with something) than them (with nothing).

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Responses

  1. All of the above but weighted.

    #4 for the Bachmann, Palin, pack.
    #3 for the Ron Paul boys
    #2 and some three for independents
    #1 is the GOP big push. de-legitimize the process which allows cover to segue …to the real attack ..furthering de-legitimizing the Obama Presidency.

    Tyranny tyrant..feel the fear.


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