ObamaCare is America’s last chance for (Democratic) “reform”
posted at 12:49 pm on December 15, 2009 by Karl
The Politico reports:
In a provocative argument designed to rescue his foundering health-care plan, President Barack Obama will warn Senate Democrats in a White House meeting Tuesday that this is the “last chance” to pass comprehensive reform.
And the quotes from Vice Pres. Joe Biden and White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer seem to back that up.
NRO’s Jim Geraghty jokes on Twitter that “Today, Obama will tell Senate Democrats this is their last chance to pass legislation opposed by 61 percent of the American people.” At Commentary, Jennifer Rubin mocks the argument as evidence of Pres. Obama’s arrogance:
On one level, it’s jaw-dropping desperation when a White House stoops to making such a nonsensical argument. It suggests that Harry Reid has managed to drive the administration’s top priority into a ditch, and the White House is panicked. The Left is furious, the Senate looks like it’s made up of a bunch of Keystone Kops, and there’s still no bill to vote on. But it’s the arrogance that’s most striking. Of course other presidents will address health care, entitlements, jobs, and the rest. History does not begin or end with Him. But he seems to think it does.
However arrogant Obama may be, he may well have a point this time.
After all, the bipartisan, conventional wisdom is that there will be fewer Democrats in Congress in 2010 — and if they fail now, it is unlikely that Pres. Obama would return to the issue in a major way.
Moreover, the politics of the issue will not get any easier moving forward. In a recent conversation with my Dad, I noted in passing that seniors are the least supportive of ObamaCare of any age group — and that they tend to vote regularly. He wisely observed that there are more seniors every day. Seniors have a host of reasons for opposing ObamaCare (risk aversion, rationing, Medicare, etc.), and that population is set to explode as Boomers reach retirement age. Accordingly, while presidents have made runs at socializing medicine over the years, American demographics make it harder to achieve every day. With entitlement costs already set to explode, this may be the Democrats’ last chance at passing another one, as the downsides are only going to become more glaringly obvious in the years ahead.