Why ObamaCare goons do not help ObamaCare
posted at 1:40 am on August 7, 2009 by Karl
To the surprise of no one, after Big Labor threatened to directly engage anti-ObamaCare protesters at Democratic town halls during the August recess, and the White House threatened to “punch back twice as hard,” violence has followed. In St. Louis and Tampa, ObamaCare supporters were snuck into town halls through side doors to fill the front rows with SEIU drones, while much larger crowds of critics were barred from entering. This was all pretty much right out of the HCAN astroturf playbook — which is amusing given that the Left just got through falsely claiming the Right had a playbook for these town halls.
In St. Louis, six people were arrested: two on suspicion of assault, one for resisting arrest and three on suspicion of committing peace disturbances. A conservative activist said he was attacked by some of those arrested, landing in the local emergency room. One of those arrested was a very loud proponent of government-run healthcare. Oddly enough, the St. Louis Post-Dispatch was unable to find violence or arrests on the side of those extremist right-wingers the Left has been yowling about.
In Tampa, a woman named Karen Miracle was photographed pushing Barry Osteen, who was debating her husband, Garry. Barry is happy with the US healthcare system. Jon Henke put his keyboard to work:
I’m guessing she’s the Karen Miracle who is Treasurer of the E. Hillsborough Democratic Club. Her husband, Garry (also pictured), is the Political Director.
It does seem unlikely that there would be two politically active Karen and Garry Miracles living in the area (if not miraculous). Henke also notes that the local media disappeared some of its initial reporting, including Kim Diehl of SEIU saying of the protests, “We’re prepared. We have strategies to deal with it if it should come up.” But the original story is still on FreeRepublic, including FR’s warning about SEIU goons.
Obviously, the left-wing pushback, originating from the White House and coordinated with HCAN (a front group masking the AFL-CIO, SEIU, ACORN and others), is designed to further The Narrative that critics of government-run healthcare are a mob of extremists bent on shutting down debate and thwarting the democratic process.
There are several reasons why this tactic does not serve the Left.
First, the Left so telegraphed their plan that they lost the element of surprise, let alone deception.
Second, Pres. Obama was the one saying that the time for talk on healthcare is over, and that this is no time for delay. RINOs like Sen. Olympia Snowe are complaining that the Democrats are trying to railroad healthcare reform through Congress. The Left wanted healthcare reform passed before the August recess, and are doing town halls because they have failed to solidify even Democratic support for the proposals on the table. They have been accusing the GOP of dragging out debate, which makes the claim that the Right is trying to shut down debate ring rather hollow.
Third, the Left’s response here reveals not only their defensive posture, but also furthers a media narrative that ObamaCare is highly controversial. They may succeed at tarring the anti-ObamaCare protesters in some cases, but the old adage about wrestling a pig applies here. Public opinion has already shifted against healthcare reform; partisan food-fights are more likely to provoke the “pox on both houses” reaction among the mushy middle than to turn the tide against ObamaCare’s critics.
Finally, rolling out union goons to Democratic town halls does not solve any of the Left’s underlying problems in selling ObamaCare. Pres. Obama has run town halls packed with supporters, with no opposition, but that has not stopped people from noticing ObamaCare’s ginormous price tag, with its implied promises of higher taxes and insurance premiums. Absent solutions to those problems (or a miraculous economic recovery this month), the public is likely to side with — and quietly root for — ObamaCare protesters.
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