Landrieu: Obama “mailing in” suggestions on ObamaCare in SOTU

posted at 3:20 pm on January 28, 2010 by Ed Morrissey

Barack Obama demanded bipartisanship and responsibility from Republicans last night, especially on health-care reform, but key Senate Democrats gave Obama himself something lower than a “good, solid B-plus” in his speech on that point.  Sens. Mary Landrieu (D-LA) and Mark Pryor (D-AR) both criticized Obama for refusing to push for a more open approach to ObamaCare, with Landrieu casting Obama’s effort as “mailing in”:

Sen. Mary Landrieu (D-La.) said health care reform “is on life support, unfortunately,” and the president should have been more specific with how Democrats should move forward.

“He should have been more clear, and I am hoping that in the next week or two he will because that is what it is going to take if it is at all possible to get it done,” Landrieu told reporters. “Mailing in general suggestions, sending them over the transom, is not necessarily going to work.”

The president’s criticism of the Senate in the speech was “a little strange, a little odd,” Landrieu said.

“Moderate Senate Democrats, who give the Senate the 60 votes, come from states that have to appreciate a broad range of ideas,” Landrieu said. For a president who ran on post-partisan platform, “it doesn’t do a great service to then say everything the House caucus passes without Republican votes, the Senate should take. It is the reverse.”

Pryor was asked whether the SOTU speech was a game-changer on ObamaCare, and his response can’t have the White House feeling terribly good:

Sen. Mark Pryor (D-Ark.) said it was “a real possibility that health care is at a stalemate and you can’t solve it this year.”

“It is hard to see how last night fundamentally changes it,” Pryor said.

Barack Obama had two big domestic policy goals last night — a public-relations pivot to jobs, and an effort to make one last push for ObamaCare.  Obama came back repeatedly to health-care reform, criticizing Republicans for blocking it with cloture votes and demanding that Congress stop putting off reform.  What that analysis left out was that Democrats had the 60 votes to pass ObamaCare in the Senate if it really was, as Obama has repeatedly stated, a common-sense and practical reform package.

Until last week when Scott Brown won the special election in Massachusetts, Republicans weren’t stopping it in the Senate — Democrats like Pryor, Landrieu, Nelson, and Lincoln had held it up.  The package was too radical for their tastes.  Moderate Democrats wanted a sense from Obama that the game plan would change enough to win their support, and that Obama himself would get involved in finding a path out of the Gordian knot into which Democrats on Capitol Hill have tied themselves.  Instead, Obama blamed Republicans and offered no new ideas.

Last night, I live-tweeted the SOTU and offered my opinion on Obama’s performance.  On delivery, I gave him an A; he was energetic, engaged, passionate, and humorous.  But the substance was nothing more than a retread of every speech Obama has already given on health care and the rest of the issues mentioned in the address.  The White House had tantalized his allies on the Left by strongly hinting that Obama would offer something new on Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell — which amounted to a one-liner offering the same promise Obama made in the campaign and all last year, which was to tell Congress to do something about it.  The same was true on immigration reform.  In fact, in both cases, Obama never even explicitly mentioned the policy (neither DADT nor “comprehensive immigration reform” was mentioned), but instead offered gauzy descriptions of the issues, and only briefly.

Obama may have done a masterful job while “mailing in” any actual policy effort, but that’s what this speech did.  Obama told Congress to pass his agenda without any promise of engagement on his own behalf, and with no change at all from his voluminous speechifying in 2009.


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Maybe he tried to call you, Mizzz Landrieu but your phones were off the hook?

SouthernGent on January 28, 2010 at 3:22 PM

I tried phoning in some suggestions, but couldn’t get into your office.

And you arrested the guys who were there to make sure your phone lines were properly opened to the public, I’m hearing.

LOL

Good Lt on January 28, 2010 at 3:22 PM

Anyone else wish she’d said that Obama was “phoning it in” instead?

teke184 on January 28, 2010 at 3:22 PM

Girl’s gonna lose her Obamajama jackpot is she keeps runnin’ off at the mouth like this.

Fletch54 on January 28, 2010 at 3:23 PM

the substance was nothing more than a retread of every speech Obama has already given on health care and the rest of the issues mentioned in the address.

An accurate characterization—retread.

ted c on January 28, 2010 at 3:24 PM

So $300 million is just not enough?

d1carter on January 28, 2010 at 3:24 PM

The speech was a combination of rehashing his campaign speeches, blaming everyone else for his failings, and trying to appear moderate. It was the strangest SOTU speech I’ve heard in my lifetime. I really believe Obama is psychologically too damaged to succeed as president and will inevitably drag us down if he isn’t stopped by an aware public.

NNtrancer on January 28, 2010 at 3:26 PM

So what exactly did the $300,000,000 have to do with healthcare reform?

volsense on January 28, 2010 at 3:26 PM

I don’t know if I would give him an “A” on delivery considering Janet fell asleep and Harry was yawning.

Gulchie on January 28, 2010 at 3:26 PM

Barack Obama demanded bipartisanship and responsibility from surrender of Republicans and all who oppose him last night…

That’s about what it was, realistically.

The only ones who aren’t grasping that are McCain and Gingrich.

“Bipartisanship” is Dem code for ‘give us what we want or face the skewers of our wrath in the media!’

Liam on January 28, 2010 at 3:27 PM

Can’t Obama overturn Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell with an executive order?

Geez Louise this man refuses to take responsibility for anything. Ever. And when he does do something stupid, like try KSM in New York, or make INTERPOL immune from US law, he just sends his minions out there and keeps his hands clean like he had no part in the decision.

uknowmorethanme on January 28, 2010 at 3:27 PM

Maybe he tried to call you, Mizzz Landrieu but your phones were off the hook?

SouthernGent on January 28, 2010 at 3:22 PM

+100
Boom zing!

Juno77 on January 28, 2010 at 3:27 PM

The implementation of the DADT policy was a tightrope walk between a brand new president, in peacetime, with a good economy, and involved some pretty close decisions, talks and such between the White House, Congress, and the DoD. Billy Jeff did not, flippantly, wave his hand, give a speech and made it so. Moreover, repealing DADT simplistically puts us where? 1992? back to the status quo ante? Simply repealing it—AND—allowing gays to openly serve undoes all what billy jeff did AND GOES BEYOND IT, because that was what he wanted in the beginning. How does Obama square that circle? Not even Billy Jeff could get her done—and he WORKED at it.

ted c on January 28, 2010 at 3:27 PM

I think its close to dead. Didn’t it take the One like close to an hour to finally mention health care last night. And all he said was that he expected Republicans to take responsibility over the process of passing it, and not to simply “obstruct” it.

El_Terrible on January 28, 2010 at 3:28 PM

Obama has been mailing it in his whole life.

Emperor Norton on January 28, 2010 at 3:28 PM

I don’t know if I would give him an “A” on delivery considering Janet fell asleep and Harry was yawning.

Gulchie on January 28, 2010 at 3:26 PM

It’s not Obama’s fault that those two tired themselves out before the Sermon.

MeatHeadinCA on January 28, 2010 at 3:28 PM

Obama has been mailing it in his whole life.

Emperor Norton on January 28, 2010 at 3:28 PM

Obama = Ellie Light?

MeatHeadinCA on January 28, 2010 at 3:28 PM

Being a condescending, narcassistic ahole while spewing the same tired talking points earns Odumbass a good solid F- in my book.

txag92 on January 28, 2010 at 3:28 PM

On delivery, I gave him an A; he was energetic, engaged, passionate, and humorous.

I’m going to have to say the drawn out length of it trumps all and drops his grade to a D+.

It’s still a passing grade, but we all know it really sucked.

uknowmorethanme on January 28, 2010 at 3:28 PM

“He should have been more clear, and I am hoping that in the next week or two he will because that is what it is going to take if it is at all possible to get it done,” Landrieu told reporters.

It was pretty clear to me Mary. Obama said “Shut up and do what I want & nobody gets hurt.”

portlandon on January 28, 2010 at 3:29 PM

Cornhusker Kickback.

OmahaConservative on January 28, 2010 at 3:30 PM

On delivery, I gave him an A; he was energetic, engaged, passionate, and humorous.

That is WAY WAY too generous.

UltimateBob on January 28, 2010 at 3:31 PM

I’m sorry, Ed. I guess – to an extent – Obama could deliver a reading of the phone book with an “A” performance. What it all comes down to is Rush Limbaugh’s classic critique of Clinton which is every bit as relevant a critique of Obama –
“All form and no substance.” As you say in the rest of your critique, just a repackaging of his same old tired arguments told throughout his past year of speechifying. Nothing new, just FDR policies regurgitated. So, is it A on delivery and D on content?

kscheuller on January 28, 2010 at 3:32 PM

Sorry, Barry. No moobs, no beads.

Christien on January 28, 2010 at 3:32 PM

Moderate Democrats wanted a sense from Obama that the game plan would change enough to win their support, and that Obama himself would get involved in finding a path out of the Gordian knot into which Democrats on Capitol Hill have tied themselves. Instead, Obama blamed Republicans and offered no new ideas.

Hmmm, I thought the last time he dragged the members of Congress together for a joint sideshow session he claimed he was about ready to unveil his own plan to help get healthcare settled? Did he ever reveal such a plan, concept, scratching on a napkin???

Of course not. Like everything else in his life, he’s content to vote present and let his “underlings” deal with his light work.

red winger on January 28, 2010 at 3:33 PM

Obama = Ellie Light?

MeatHeadinCA on January 28, 2010 at 3:28 PM

Unprecedented astroturfing.

UltimateBob on January 28, 2010 at 3:33 PM

If he couldn’t shock the healthcare monkey to life with his pipes over the last year, he certainly wasn’t going to do it in another speech. He never owned, nor provided the political courage to get this done. Moreover, he no longer has the political capital to do it. Doubly stupid is the fact that he doesn’t have the courage to walk away from the stuff that is hurting him the most politically—by his own arrogance.

Whatevs. One way or another he’ll learn his lesson. We the People own this country. We just have to tolerate this dunderhead for a few more weeks/months/damn! and we’ll trade him in.

ted c on January 28, 2010 at 3:34 PM

Too funny … watch till the end

J_Crater on January 28, 2010 at 3:34 PM

On delivery, I gave him an A;

The problem I have with an A is that he was there to deliver THE STATE OF THE UNION, and he did no such thing.

redwhiteblue on January 28, 2010 at 3:36 PM

OT: They’re trying to close debate on Bernake’s re-nomination. Why is Paul Kirk, from interim Senator no more from Massachusetts, allowed to vote? His time ended on the 19th, and it’s already the 28th.

Enoxo on January 28, 2010 at 3:36 PM

Get with the program people.

Clearly a few hundred million in speeches and ads, blackmailing, control of Congress/Executive; branch 9 months later with zero to show is what “effective leadership” is all about.

I hear Nick Saban is asking for opinions on how to win the BCS next year…

Odie1941 on January 28, 2010 at 3:39 PM

On delivery, I gave him an A; he was energetic, engaged, passionate, and humorous.

Most people don’t know that Ed is related to Chris Buckley.

Dorvillian on January 28, 2010 at 3:40 PM

Man. Obama should have just left the 300 mil on the dresser if all he was going to get was a dissing like that.

greggriffith on January 28, 2010 at 3:40 PM

On delivery, I gave him an A; he was energetic, engaged, passionate, and humorous

You must have been drunk before the speech started.

Knucklehead on January 28, 2010 at 3:40 PM

Enoxo on January 28, 2010 at 3:36 PM

Come now, you didn’t expect dingy harry to play fair, did you?

OmahaConservative on January 28, 2010 at 3:42 PM

Too funny … watch till the end

J_Crater on January 28, 2010 at 3:34 PM

Best.Rebuttal.EVER.

portlandon on January 28, 2010 at 3:42 PM

Gosh, I thought he was an A******, too.

kingsjester on January 28, 2010 at 3:43 PM

Come now, you didn’t expect dingy harry to play fair, did you?

OmahaConservative on January 28, 2010 at 3:42 PM

In fact, “Kirk’s Office” is saying Brown won’t be seated until February 11th.

Enoxo on January 28, 2010 at 3:46 PM

Eric Erickson is frontpaging this Adam fella for a race in Illinois. A star on the rise? Apparently strikes *fear* in the heart of his party and opponents. A “Rubio” according to Eric.

http://www.redstate.com

http://www.adamforillinois.com/

ted c on January 28, 2010 at 3:47 PM

Wait until November and see how that works out for Democrats.

tarpon on January 28, 2010 at 3:47 PM

I don’t think “Let me be clear” means what they think it means…

catmman on January 28, 2010 at 3:47 PM

Don’t need ObamaCare, what we need are jobs. Omaha Company Laying Off 110 Workers

OmahaConservative on January 28, 2010 at 3:47 PM

Landrieu’s political career is on life support.

LASue on January 28, 2010 at 3:48 PM

Enoxo on January 28, 2010 at 3:46 PM

What the hell is the holdup? Did they discover boxes of ballots in Marcia’s trunk?

OmahaConservative on January 28, 2010 at 3:49 PM

There were a couple of long pauses… TOTUS on the blink?

KeepOhioRed on January 28, 2010 at 3:50 PM

Hmmmmmmm. What’s happened in the last few days that would force Landrieu out in front on this or any other issue, trying to appear engaged and interested in her constituents? I hear another shoe dropping…

Rational Thought on January 28, 2010 at 3:50 PM

Landrieu must need another cash fix and wants an advance on her next bribe.

rplat on January 28, 2010 at 3:50 PM

Too funny … watch till the end

J_Crater on January 28, 2010

at 3:34 PM

I give that a solid A+

batterup on January 28, 2010 at 3:51 PM

Ed – I still don’t understand why you give him an “A” for Delivery when he didn’t “deliver” much of anything new, and can’t “deliver” legislation that never makes it to his desk. The man still doesn’t seem to understand the role of the Executive branch.

I know that you meant “Delivery” in the sense of speaking and presentation, but the other definitions are relevant also. You will be quoted, you know.

connertown on January 28, 2010 at 3:53 PM

Obummer is lazy, Miss Mary, he can’t be more clear than that. He doesn’t have a clue what to do, that’s why he keeps Congress around.

Kissmygrits on January 28, 2010 at 3:54 PM

Barry Obama – long on talk, short on details and action. Again.

GarandFan on January 28, 2010 at 3:57 PM

B+

F

angryed on January 28, 2010 at 3:57 PM

Why is Paul Kirk, from interim Senator no more from Massachusetts, allowed to vote? His time ended on the 19th, and it’s already the 28th.

One Republican has to raise a Point of Order, and no one has done it. This is very important, since the debt ceiling resolution passed 60-39 today (H. J. Res 45) and that special kind of bill requires a 3/5 majority. Kirk’s vote was crucial.

There is Senate precedent for situation likes this one, where the law says that the new Senator chosen in a special election is to be seated after “election and qualification.” In 1939, the Senate decided that insisting on the “qualification” part was a violation of the 17th Amendment (which established the direct election of Senators) and that the interim Senator could not vote any more.

Today, the Democrats will not yield the seat until they are forced to do so, and the Republican leadership isn’t doing it.

Emperor Norton on January 28, 2010 at 3:58 PM

A word to Landrieu ,Nelson ,Lincoln and the rest of you so called Mod Sen.You danced with the devil now you will get burned come Nov.So enough already of your concerns now about any thing.

thmcbb on January 28, 2010 at 4:00 PM

I keep reading where Obama is a great “orator” Since when? He is only a great “READER” Take away his teleprompter and his “oo’s” and “er’s” and stutters etc are rampant in anything he has to say. He can READ a great script from his teleprompter that is it. He is ARROGANT beyond words . . . he believes that the sun sets and rises on his command . . . he is the biggest fool because he believes it himself.

djplam on January 28, 2010 at 4:03 PM

Landrieu is my Senator and I’ve been trying to call in my health care suggestions to her.

But I can’t get through to her office – telephone line is dead.

Any idea what’s going on? :P

HondaV65 on January 28, 2010 at 4:06 PM

Obama blamed the Republicans for not pushing a dead Obamacare over the finish line.

pedestrian on January 28, 2010 at 4:07 PM

1) CYSAing

2) Does Louisiana still get the $300M?

Jed_Eckert on January 28, 2010 at 4:10 PM

Landrieu is running scared. She prostituted her ethics and SOLD her vote to the Socialists who will bankrupt this nation.

Now that she’s on record as sleeping with them – she’s deeply afraid the “payoff” isn’t coming her way now.

And …

It isn’t.

So this is a lesson kiddies … the “Ben Nelson / Mary Landrieu How-To-Sell-Your-Soul-and-Go-On-Record-With-It … And get absolutely nothing in return for it!” book.

Can you say …

“Hung Out To Dry” ???!!!

HondaV65 on January 28, 2010 at 4:11 PM

2) Does Louisiana still get the $300M?

Jed_Eckert on January 28, 2010 at 4:10 PM

NO.

She’s hung out to dry.

Hilarious!

HondaV65 on January 28, 2010 at 4:12 PM

Republican leadership isn’t doing it.

Emperor Norton on January 28, 2010 at 3:58 PM

You mean Maverick and his friends?

MeatHeadinCA on January 28, 2010 at 4:24 PM

Way past time for Louisiana to fire the Landrieus.

Christien on January 28, 2010 at 4:29 PM

What, is the Emperor actually supposed to get His hands dirty with politics? Dear Liar has issued His commands, now it is for His minions to jam unwanted legislation down the throats of the American serfs.

rbj on January 28, 2010 at 4:30 PM

Hey Mary, your phone is ringing, better answer it!

BlueStateBilly on January 28, 2010 at 4:38 PM

On delivery, I gave him an A; he was energetic, engaged, passionate, and humorous.

Rush, more or less, said it stunk. From what I’ve seen, I’m with Rush.

Rush played a clip of Obama, orating before the election, in contrast to SOTU. The fire is gone.

I think, when the fire is gone, you’re toast.

donh525 on January 28, 2010 at 4:42 PM

what we need are jobs
OmahaConservative on January 28, 2010 at 3:47 PM

Isn’t it ironic.

Badger40 on January 28, 2010 at 4:54 PM

Way past time for Louisiana to fire the Landrieus.

Christien on January 28, 2010 at 4:29 PM

At least William Jefferson had cold hard cash for a while. Mary Landrieu made a deal with the devil and now that Obamacare has imploded, she could well be without a deal for LA and without a job come her next election.

highhopes on January 28, 2010 at 6:27 PM

On delivery, I gave him an A; he was energetic, engaged, passionate, and humorous.

Are you nuts, Ed? Tell me you did not write the above and all will be forgiven. Tell me you were liquored up and all will be forgiven.

Let me affect your adjectives to make it real:

energetic frenetic

engaged and/or engaging? that`s the last thing he was

passionate delusional

humor ous he did not humour US in the least and his humor was bile producing and delivered with smirk.

Did you really write this Morrissey? Did you give Obama an “A” for a keen delivery of lies, one after another?

I think we would all rather hear a stumble bum ramble the truth than the president of these United States spit out lies ever so smoothly.

I think your “A” don`t make no sense.

I`m calling you out on this one, whatever that means on a blog . . . .

Maybe I am picking on a detail as you clearly disagree with Obama. Am I correct?

But to give Obama good marks for lying smoothly while smoothly lying is inane.

Finally, given all of the lies, one can hardly say Obama was “masterful” or should get an “A” for delivery.

I give my pizza delivery guy an “A”. And the contents of his delivery are much to be preferred to Obama`s. So the pizza guy gets a big tip, while Obama deserves a fat lip which means torture under his administration so we better forget about it.

Whew!

Sherman1864 on January 28, 2010 at 11:49 PM