Saturday, October 1, 2011
The Incredible Irony of Obamacare and Obama's Electability
This past week the Obama administration's Justice Department (yes, they are his guys), surprised many court watchers by choosing to bypass the appellate avenue available to them and allow Obamacare to proceed on its appointed path to the Supreme Court. This is the "sort of" expedited path many were advocating months ago to put to rest all the uncertainty associated with the individual mandate provision.
Here's what's at stake and the weird political calculus that goes into this latest calculation:
If the SCOTUS strikes down Obamacare as unconstitutional -- especially if the final vote ends up being yet another 5-4 split -- then President Obama can argue he should be re-elected. How? Say what? It's simple really. He would argue the next opening on the Supreme Court could be filled by him with a more Sotomayor/Kagan-kind of liberal who would have supported Obamacare. Forget what the public polling is telling him about the majority of Americans who hate the idea of Obamacare being rammed down their throats, Obama sees a win for him even in a resounding defeat at the SCOTUS.
Here's the judicial issue (among many others) at stake in this next election:
If a conservative Republican wins the presidency, the court is all but assured to retain its right of center with one swing vote make-up. If Obama is re-elected, he will surely move with his next nomination to move the court to a more liberal majority. If the Republicans control both houses of Congress the point is moot. That's how finely balanced we are as a country on the fulcrum.
The country really does hang in the balance between the two polar-opposite points of view.
On the one hand Obamacare is extraordinarily unpopular among a plurality of Americans who want to see it repealed. Mitt Romney and all the others on the Republican platform vying for your vote in 2012, have uniformly declared as POTUS they will kill it, Romney proposing to do it through an executive order on day one of his presidency with an executive order granting a waiver to all 50 states. Romney continues to be bashed by Romneycare in Massachusetts, and his successor who raised taxes to pay for it continues to praise it, as does Obama who claims he modeled his plan after Romney's. That issue just isn't going to gain much traction with the voters.
The thing that is so damnable about Obamacare is that it didn't pick up one single vote from the opposition party in the Senate. That puts it in a class all its own from other bi-partisan entitlement safety net programs like Social Security, Medicare and Medicaid. Further, a majority (26) of state attorneys general either filed or joined lawsuits to overturn the mandate that requires practically all Americans to purchase health insurance.
Freedom-loving people HATE being told by a dictatorial government what to do with their lives. It's the reason America was founded -- to escape tyrannical dictators who wanted to control them through taxation without representation. Currently, we have representation, and we will continue to change that representation at the ballot box until we find a Congress and a President who will do our bidding. It's really what representative republics are all about.
Americans are finally awake and on task politically. I've been asked in recent weeks if I think all this pent-up anger will last until November, 2012. You betchyer bippy it will, especially if the economy continues to tank and there are further attempts like the "American Jobs Act" that are nothing else but more government debt and increased taxes as far as the eye can see.
It is remarkable how dismissive this President seems to be in the face of the expressed anger and frustration of the American people who elected him. His arrogance and his ideological intransigence are now on full display. He claims the Republicans are merely obstructionists who have no constructive ideas. He must have missed this memo, sent to his Republican caucus by Eric Cantor, the House Majority Leader.
So, Mr. President, please click on the link and get a clue. Your stump speech rhetoric has to change into action and you need to start doing the job people elected you to do. Start leading, stop whining.
Obama's "all-or-nothing" tendency to propose, then whine, then blame Congress, and his continuing refusal to even consider the points of agreement Cantor outlines where there might be constructive conversations in the halls of Congress, will do nothing to improve his chance for re-election among Americans with even a sliver of common sense when presented with the facts. Who's the real obstructionist here? Is it the tea party activists, the Republican-controlled House, the Democrat-controlled Senate or the POTUS?
All fingers will increasingly be pointing at the President if he doesn't soon take a more moderate view and learn to work with what he has in Congress. It's the very reason the Constitution assured divided and shared power. But he routinely goes on the campaign junkets and complains bitterly that if he weren't constrained by Congress he could really get things done. And this is a constitutional lawyer by training.
But all those considerations aside, let's get back to Obamacare and how it affects Obama's electability.
I saw a poll in Investors Business Daily stating two-thirds of all doctors "oppose" Obamacare and predict lower-quality health care. Another poll by McKinsey & Co. reveals nearly one-third of businesses plan to drop health insurance for their employees after 2014, when much of Obamacare goes into effect. Why? Because the costs will make it prohibitive for private enterprise to compete with the government-mandated overhaul. That is all by deliberate design to enthrone government as the ultimate sovereign, the end-all, be-all solution to all the ills society inflicts upon us.
It can be argued by many proponents of Obamacare that the American Medical Association supports it. However, only 17 percent of doctors in America today belong to the organization -- hardly a representation of the name of the organization. Many doctors have dropped their membership precisely because of the AMA's endorsement of Obamacare. Americans consistently rank physicians among the most respected of professionals.
But the President? He's a man with no private-sector experience, who arrogantly ignores doctors' objections. In almost every scenario, the President continues to isolate himself in his ideological cocoon, asserting he knows better than everyone else what is right for America and Americans.
If he's lucky, the American voter in 2012 will put Obama out to pasture like they did Jimmy Carter in 1980. By the way, today is Carter's birthday. He's 87 years old. I remain a great admirer of Carter's native intelligence, his passion for trying to do what was right from his Christian perspective, his initiatives to bring peace to the Middle East, and his passion for humanitarian doing-good since he left the White House. However, like his successor, Barack Obama, he was an ineffective president with his leftist liberal politics. Obama's fight to end Bush-era tax rates for the "rich," along with his misguided social engineering represented by Obamacare will all go down in flames. These policies are misguided and proven to be unsuccessful.
Here's the irony in a nutshell: I believe a Supreme Court rejection of the Obamacare individual mandate would immediately give a much-needed boost the economy and the American psyche. It would dramatically improve Obama's prospects for re-election. He could thank his lucky stars when it's struck down.
In his arrogance, however, he'll find a way to manipulate the SCOTUS outcome with his political spin calculus if he wins on Obamacare.
And whichever way that turns out, the American voters will reject him in November.
You heard it here first, Mr. President. We're on to you.