Obama’s Michael Dukakis moment

posted at 9:28 am on June 25, 2009 by Ed Morrissey

Barack Obama got ABC to move their news division into the White House in order to make the big pitch for his egalitarian, everyone-gets-treated-equally ObamaCare push.  Instead, Obama fumbled into a Michael Dukakis moment that exposed him as a hypocrite.  ABC itself leads with Obama’s response that he wouldn’t stay within his own plan for his family:

President Obama struggled to explain today whether his health care reform proposals would force normal Americans to make sacrifices that wealthier, more powerful people — like the president himself — wouldn’t face.

The probing questions came from two skeptical neurologists during ABC News’ special on health care reform, “Questions for the President: Prescription for America,” anchored from the White House by Diane Sawyer and Charles Gibson.

Dr. Orrin Devinsky, a neurologist and researcher at the New York University Langone Medical Center, said that elites often propose health care solutions that limit options for the general public, secure in the knowledge that if they or their loves ones get sick, they will be able to afford the best care available, even if it’s not provided by insurance.

Devinsky asked the president pointedly if he would be willing to promise that he wouldn’t seek such extraordinary help for his wife or daughters if they became sick and the public plan he’s proposing limited the tests or treatment they can get.

The president refused to make such a pledge, though he allowed that if “it’s my family member, if it’s my wife, if it’s my children, if it’s my grandmother, I always want them to get the very best care.["]

Oopsie!  So ObamaCare for thee, but not for me?  Hope and change, baby!

In 1988, Michael Dukakis blew a question about the death penalty when asked about whether he’d want it if his wife Kitty had been raped and murdered.  Dukakis said no, but addressed it clinical legalese rather than absorbing the opportunity to address the emotional impact of violent crime, and his candidacy cratered.  In this case, Obama did a reverse Dukakis.  He went with the emotional argument, and effectively rebutted his own proposal and its egalitarian purpose.  It’s a moment of sheer hypocrisy, caught in the modern amber of video.

If ObamaCare isn’t good enough for Sasha, Malia, or Michelle, then it’s not good enough for America.  Instead of fighting that impulse, Obama should be working to boost the private sector to encourage more care providers, less red tape and expense, and better care for everyone.

Update: RCP has the video of the exchange.


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Yep, but the fix is to require all the people in the same plan … Presidents and Congressmen first.

tarpon on June 25, 2009 at 4:35 PM

I see RNC ADS in my future

freemarketlibertine on June 25, 2009 at 9:37 AM

Are you crazy? Michael Steele is still under his desk wetting his pants crying for his mommy! He hasn’t left since becoming the head of the RNC and discovered that he only says what he is allowed to say by the non-conservatives in the party! They love the idea of National Health Care! It’s more big government! This is RINO Heaven!!!

sabbott on June 25, 2009 at 4:37 PM

He could also tell the rest of us what we can and can’t set our thermostats to while jacking the White House’s up to tropical levels. It’s the same old dreck, the difference being that so many people are so enamored of Obama that they just can’t see it.

evergreen on June 25, 2009 at 4:38 PM

Can it really be that Obama said these two statements on the same day:

1. The president refused to make such a pledge, though he allowed that if “it’s my family member, if it’s my wife, if it’s my children, if it’s my grandmother, I always want them to get the very best care.["]

2. In a nationally televised event at the White House, Obama said families need better information so they don’t unthinkingly approve “additional tests or additional drugs that the evidence shows is not necessarily going to improve care.”…He added: “Maybe you’re better off not having the surgery, but taking the painkiller.”

Can anybody doubt that if we had a Republican president right now, the DNC wouldn’t be screaming “double standards!” and “health care for the rich!”

Ugh.

AuH20 on June 25, 2009 at 4:52 PM

Question: Anyone else getting Obamacare robo calls today?
DngrMse on June 25, 2009 at 4:24 PM

Yes, and they said if I order ObomaCare in the next 12 minutes, I’ll get a second ObamaCare FOR FREE! Both for just $19,999.99 a year! Incredible!

scituate_tgr on June 25, 2009 at 4:54 PM

Yes, and they said if I order ObomaCare in the next 12 minutes,

…because we can’t do this all day…

I’ll get a second ObamaCare FOR FREE! Both for just $19,999.99 a year! Incredible!

uncivilized on June 25, 2009 at 5:03 PM

Gimme some ‘o’ that ORbamaWELLness!!!

‘Cause Big Barry is lookin’ out fer me.

babylonandon on June 25, 2009 at 5:09 PM

Would you rather he say that in fact everyone, rich and poor, will be forced into the government plan?

tneloms on June 25, 2009 at 10:03 AM

Why shouldn’t they be? It’s an admission that the government plan is going to suck out loud.

ddrintn on June 25, 2009 at 5:15 PM

Slappy, Lord of the Fly, doesn’t leave any doubt what this is all about, does he.

“Spreading the Wealth” sailed past a majority of Americans… Spreading the Health, prob’ly will too.

*sigh*

franksalterego on June 25, 2009 at 5:17 PM

If congress and the president don’t have to live with this, then neither do we. I don’t know why this isn’t the first question to be asked. “Sir, will you be taking the public option for your family? No? Well why on earth not?”
Don’t even talk to me about any plans where we subsidize unions and exempt congress.

exceller on June 25, 2009 at 5:49 PM

Whew! Obama has managed to tumble and bumble onto a version of Class Envy that even I can finally get enthusiastic about and support.

If it ain’t good enough for the Obama family, it sure ain’t good enough for me and mine. If we’re gonna bite the socialist bullet, let’s at least make sure it’s democratically socialist…uniform across the board…make even the president, the congress, the rich, the poor have the exact same craptastic, push-me-I’m-comin’ health care coverage.

…and no fair flying off on Air Force One to England for procedures we no longer do here.

marybel on June 25, 2009 at 7:51 PM

What a crock… That whole exchange was set up and scripted.

Of course the President and his family will exempt themselves from the ‘little people’ level of medical coverage. The little people know that. The kool-aid guzzling Obamabots will not only condone it but encourage it. As long as the poor and uninsured get their ‘something is better than nothing’. And they’ll thank the heavens for gracing us with Obama’s presence that he could provide it to them. Barackus Casear’s just getting that little sticking point out in the open now, straight out the gate, so it will never be a bone of contention in the future as the push for ObamaCare starts to heat up.

The poor and the lesser-employed know already, beyond a shadow of a doubt, that the rich will always be able to get their medical care taken care of out of their own pockets so they’ll never be limited to any level of care or tests that aren’t at the apex of available treatment.

It is a no-brainer. Obama knows the little people already know that and in cahoots with ABC and the rest of the Obama fellating media it is simply being addressed now to get it out of the way before the big push.

If anything, people who get the righteous ‘AHA! GOTCHA!’ indignation feeling over this are just be worked over and toyed with by Barackus Casear and his media tools.

Obama is the great deceiver and his minions do their master’s bidding. End of story.

SilverStar830 on June 25, 2009 at 8:33 PM

make sure it’s democratically socialist…uniform across the board…make even the president, the congress, the rich, the poor have the exact same craptastic, push-me-I’m-comin’ health care coverage.

Well, if that’s how socialism REALLY worked, it never would have been put into practice.

That’s the great thing about being a socialist dictator. You get all the goodies and the masses get crap. Makes you feel like a big man when the peasants on bicycles have to clear out of the way for your limosine.

Or when you tell everyone how great our public schools are, while your daughters ride chauffeured limos to their $25,000 a year elementary school.

What’sr really amazing is that so many Americans were stupid enough to vote for this guy.

NoDonkey on June 25, 2009 at 9:06 PM

The president refused to make such a pledge, though he allowed that if “it’s my family member, if it’s my wife, if it’s my children, if it’s my grandmother, I always want them to get the very best care.["]

Oh, I see, so obamacare won’t be the very best?

boomer on June 25, 2009 at 9:29 PM

Hillary must be having trouble hiding the glee in her eyes just about now. Health care is a quagmire NOBODY is going to be able to “solve” since it doesn’t fit in a one-size-fits-all box. Obama isn’t smart enough to get his shoes on the correct feet all by himself–he hasn’t a clue how to do anything acceptable about health care.

BTW, if American health care is so awful, why are so many poor people getting dialysis, free meds and home nursing? This is the only country where the poor eat so much they get diabetes. I’m just sayin’.

tcn on June 25, 2009 at 9:49 PM

i certainly do not want to be forced to pay for care for my fat neighbor who smokes,drinks and eats pork rinds all day long.

Poppieseeds, I didn’t know you were my neighbor! Mow your grass for goodness sakes. Hey, I don’t start eating the pork rinds until after noon. That’s because my beer isn’t cold until then.

I don’t have time to read all the comments in this thread. Poppie makes a great point here. Why should someone pay for my bad habits? Why should I pay for the fitness freak down the street from me who is turning his knees into bags of gravel?

I don’t expect him to quit running. I’m not going to lay off of the pork rinds and beer. It’s free country, for crying out loud.

The best thing to do with health insurance is to scrap all the danged HMOs and third party payer plans and let people purchase their own insurance. And, they have to stop states like Kentucky from chasing out all the competition and then forbidding its citizens from purchasing insurance through an out-of-state provider.

Regulations in this state have turned health insurance into the equivalent of an auto insurance policy that pays for oil changes and brake maintenance.

I’m kidding about the pork rinds. I have developed a paunch over the years, but I’m in pretty good health, as is the rest of my family. What I need is catastrophic coverage because I can handle the $60 doctor’s office visits here and there. I sat down and figured out that between my employer and my co-pay, we’re shelling out nearly $14,000 a year for health insurance.

That’s just insane. If there was a free market and individual coverage plans only, I could do a lot with that $14K. Instead, I have to sink in an HMO that covers the dope smoking, hard core drug users that also work for my employer. I’m also tied to the twentysomethings who break bones and snap tendons playing basketball. One co-worker rung up our HMO for nearly $50,000 for injuries sustained in a skiing accident.

I don’t want to be tied to anyone when it comes to health insurance.

The system is screwed up, but Obamacare will be a disaster.

Ampleforth on June 25, 2009 at 10:49 PM

Follow up question:

Should Castro have led by example by not seeking health care outside of Cuba?

Saltysam on June 25, 2009 at 11:51 PM

The president refused to make such a pledge, though he allowed that if “it’s my family member, if it’s my wife, if it’s my children, if it’s my grandmother, I always want them to get the very best care.["]

Is there anyone in the world who doesn’t want the best for himself and his family? But Barak Obama isn’t capable of imagining that anyone else feels the same way he does.

Liberals are what Ayn Rand refered to as “subjectivists.” This kind of patent contradiction couldn’t matter less to them. Every one of them who heard this – whether he’s a Senator or a dish washer – secretly thinks that HE will get a better deal than everyone else out of Socialism. That’s how the whole system works.

logis on June 26, 2009 at 12:13 AM

Email addresses for Congress. I’ve cleaned them up as best as I can, though some may bounce. Tell Congress they’re done destroying this country, and send these to your family and friends.
================
ca44@legislators.com
diaz-balart@att.worldnet.com
epomeroy@house.gov
fl19@legislators.com
gresham@barrettforcongress.com
info@murphy06.com
jesse@jackson.house.gov
john@salazar2004.com
lantos4congress@lantos.org
shimkus@shimkus.org
tx11@legislators.com
tx18@lee.house.gov
zoe@lofgren.house.gov
denny.rehberg@mail.house.gov
jerrold.nadler@mail.house.gov
john_kerry@kerry.senate.gov
senator@collins.senate.gov
senator@klobuchar.senate.gov
senator@landrieu.senate.gov
senator@levin.senate.gov
senator_murray@murray.senate.gov
WYR@mail.house.gov
adam.smith@mail.house.gov
agriculture@mail.house.gov
alandmark@gmail.com
AmericanVoices@mail.house.gov
asa.hutchinson@mail.house.gov
barbara.lee@mail.house.gov
BART@HR.HOUSE.GOV
BBARR@HR.HOUSE.GOV
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bernie@mail.house.gov
BILBRAY@HR.HOUSE.GOV
bill.pascrell@mail.house.gov
BILLNM03@HR.HOUSE.GOV
bishop.email@mail.house.gov
blunt@mail.house.gov
bob.riley@mail.house.gov
Bob@InglisforCongress.com
bobby.rush@mail.house.gov
brad.sherman@mail.house.gov
brad@bradmiller.org
braleyforcongress@brucebraley.com
brian.baird@mail.house.gov
brian.bilbray@mail.house.gov
budget@mail.house.gov
ca39@legislators.com
Campaign@GiffordsforCongress.com
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campaign@kennyforcongress.com
campaign@murphyforcongress.org
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carol@carolforcongress.com
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istook@hr.house.gov
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melissa@melissabean.com
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murtha@mail.house.gov
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NEIL@ABERCROMBIE.HOUSE.GOV
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senator@hutchison.senate.gov
senator@johnson.senate.gov
senator@nelson.senate.gov
senator@rockefeller.senate.gov
senator@schumer.senate.gov
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senator_byrd@byrd.senate.gov
senator_hatch@hatch.senate.gov
senator_kohl@kohl.senate.gov
senator_kyl@kyl.senate.gov
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souder@mail.house.gov
steve@kagen4congress.com
steven.rothman@mail.house.gov
stupak@mail.house.gov
sue@suemyrick.com
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tim@timwalz.org
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tom.latham@mail.house.gov
tompetri@mail.house.gov
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william.delahunt@mail.house.gov
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write.earl@mail.house.gov
zoegram@lofgren.house.gov

macummings on June 26, 2009 at 1:14 AM

If there are any Republican challengers with even half a functioning brain cell in 2012, Obama should be dead to rights after last night.

Cylor on June 26, 2009 at 2:19 AM

“We the People” have to get it through our thick little heads that our large-brained, super-smart, Ivy League educated leaders know what’s best for us. They are so indispensable to our collective well-being that they require “special” perks like superior health care, private jets, taxpayer-paid vacations, etc., etc., etc. Why, if anything were to happen to them, we’d all be left to our own devices… and we can’t have that now, can we?

Logic on June 26, 2009 at 7:53 AM

Gee! Congress and the President would pass (sponsor) legislation that applied to the general public but not to them. Who would have thunk it?

georgeofthedesert on June 26, 2009 at 9:43 AM

I’m sorry. How did we get from “would you seek access to health care not provided in a public plan?” to “when my Grandmother was diagnosed with terminal cancer, we weren’t sure if she should get a hip replacement”?????
WTF?!
WHY DOES THE MAINSTREAM MEDIA ALWAYS GIVE OBAMA A FREE PASS???!!!!!

I am SOOOO sick of living in an Orwellian nightmare!!

KMC1 on June 26, 2009 at 9:48 AM

In a few short months, Obama has provided more sound bites to sink him in 2012. UNLESS he can rig the system with billions of OUR tax dollars. Even if the economy comes roaring back, he’s still branded himself a complete liar. The MSM can’t control anti-Obama commercials which expose him as such. It’s gonna be brutal.

marklmail on June 26, 2009 at 10:31 AM

I think this story mischaracterizes his comments unfairly (and I do not like Obama one iota.) He clearly meant that generally he wants the best for his wife and children – well who could disagree with that?

We have enough real issues to oppose him on without creating false ones like this story does.

Sheerq on June 26, 2009 at 10:36 AM

Obama is the ultimate lying, double-talking hypocrite. I’ve never seen anything like it. This one here is up there with the school voucher debacle where he’s throwing the poor little black girls out of the private school his daughters attend. lmao

marklmail on June 26, 2009 at 11:38 AM

Healthcare if it passes is going to be like education. You gots yer public, and you gots yer private. We all know where Teh Won stands on education for his girls.

John the Libertarian on June 26, 2009 at 8:20 PM

Obama’s ‘Very Best Care’ For His Own Family ABC Comment Largely Unimportant Elsewhere
http://newsbusters.org/blogs/tom-blumer/2009/06/27/obamas-very-best-care-his-own-family-abc-comment-strangely-unimportant-e

StewartIII on June 27, 2009 at 2:40 AM

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