ObamaCare is not popular. The people don't want it. The people have rejected it. Yet President Barack Obama, Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) are going to ram it down the throats of the American people using a special Congressional procedure that avoids a filibuster in the Senate - The Health Care Nuclear Option. The Obama Administration and Leaders in Congress have shown contempt for the opinions and views of the American people. They just don't get it and they don't care what people think about this plan.
Townhalls, Tea Parties, 9-12 demonstrations, ObamaCare low polling numbers and the election of Senator Scott Brown (R-MA) are all products of an unpopular health care idea by President Obama. The Declaration of Independence states, "Governments are instituted among Men, deriving their just powers from the consent of the governed." Consent of the governed is an important concept, yet politicians in the Federal Government seem to believe that they can pass unpopular legislation and work to get the consent of the governed at some future date. This is not how this democracy is supposed to work. Members of Congress are supposed to be responsive to voters and the American public. I truly believe that many Representatives and Senators believe that the American peoples only are allowed to participate in this democracy when they vote every other November. This ObamaCare should not pass without the consent of the American people.
Better late than never. Now that President Obama has finally put a health care proposal on the table, the Democratic leadership in Congress has only one rational course of action: Pass the thing, and quickly, or risk becoming the loyal minority.
The left wants this passed "quickly," because they know the American people will be mad. The American people do not follow every permutation in the ObamaCare debate and they were shocked to find out that the bill is still alive.
Robert Reich writes in Salon:
Most polls still show a majority of Americans still in favor of the basic tenets of reform -- expanded coverage, regulations barring insurers from refusing coverage because of someone’s preexisting conditions and preventing insurers from kicking someone off the rolls because they get sick, requirements that employers provide coverage or pay into a common pool, and so on. And now that many private insurers are hiking up premiums, co-pays, and deductibles, the public is even readier to embrace reform.
Don't believe this spin. The polls indicate that the American people hate the totality of this bill - a de facto government run health care system. They may embrace a few concepts in the legislation, but clearly these numbers have not translated into support. To argue that somehow the American people love a bill is ignoring the polls. Real Clear Politics has links to ObamaCare polls and none of them are good for liberals.
Newsweek's most recent poll finds that in response to the question "if health coverage is required for everyone, imposing fines on individuals who don’t obtain coverage and on larger businesses that don’t offer it do you Support (28%), Oppose (62%), or don't know (10%)." That is the problem with ObamaCare, the core elements of the plan are nonstarters for the American people. If this plan contains some good ideas, those are outweighed by some elements that are highly offensive to the American people. The American people support addition by subtraction in this debate. Remove the mandate that all individuals have to purchase health care or fear going to jail, federal funding of abortion, massive tax increases, massive long term cost to the taxpayer, new government bureaucracy to lord over the health care insurance companies and you may see some of these polling numbers move in a different direction.
The Newsweek poll is favorable for Democrats, because of the questions they asked. Check out some of the other polls that lead to an overall Real Clear Politics Average of this and 14.3% oppose the President''s plan more than they support it. This includes two polls with the ObamaCare support deficit at 19% - Rasmussen and Quinnipiac.
I wrote another piece today for Human Events, "Reconciliation is Not Negotiation," about the unusual procedure being employed by leaders to pass ObamaCare. Dan Perrin has published some excellent work on ObamaCare and argues in an earlier post on Red State that this a "Vapor Bill" because the Obama Administration has yet to release the text of his bill.