Tuesday, March 23, 2010

The Blowback Begins

Via Memeorandum A CNN poll of 1030 adults, not voters or registered voters but adults, shows Obama underwater in his job approval with 46% approving and 51% disapproving. The earliest CNN poll tracking Obama's approval was conducted in February 2009 showed an amazing 76% approving of Obama's performance. These were not the lowest points for Obama, however. Measuring President Obama's performance on the Federal Budget deficit a full 62% disapproved. He scored lower on all measures of the economy while he fared better on scores on his performance as Commander-in-Chief.

CNN is quick to add that respondents overwhelmingly approve of President Obama as a person with 70% saying they did approve. I think this is possibly the least meaningful metric asked in these tracking polls. It is worth noting that Obama's personal approval was nearly identical to that o George W. Bush. Something tells me if I went back to read a write up on Bush's polls, I would be less likely to find that personal approval mentioned.

It is likely that Obama's poll numbers will see a bump in coming days. If I were a betting woman, I would guess the bump will come entirely from Democrats who are relieved the massive tax increases and government health care regime is going to be the law of the land, for now anyway.

Speaking of statistics, Megan McArdle is on something of a tear these days challenging the dramatic arguments used to sell health care. Read the whole post but here is a nice taste:
During that debate I heard a lot about the 20-45,000 people who were dying from lack of insurance every year. I heard about how US mortality indicators lagged behind the rest of the developed world. I heard about infant mortality. I heard, over and over again, about medical bankruptcies, and how medical bills were bankrupting America. I heard about the CBO score that said this bill would be deficit neutral. Let me know if I've missed anything, but it seems to me that mortality, financial protection, and deficit-improvement were the three major planks upon which this bill was sold. They are certainly the bulk of the anecdotes that fill heart-rending articles and presidential speeches.

Forgive me, but to my admittedly naive ears, this sounds like what you are saying is that you think that if we cover the uninsured, we will have lower mortality rates, fewer medical bankruptcies, and a lower deficit.
Megan wants the ObamaCare cheerleaders (*cough* Ezra Klein) to put their money where their mouths are, so to speak. It is a nice little takedown particularly coming from a recovering Obama voter.

Pundette has a great round up unraveling the sausage making that led up to ObamaCare.

Jay Cost who blogs at Real Clear Politics thinks this legislation makes Obama himself politically vulnerable and details his analysis in a lengthy post.  The short version is the legislation is structured to hide the true costs and deficits it will naturally incur when the bill is implemented.  The tricks Democrats used to hide the costs are what will ultimately get them in the end:
 After decades of developing a reputation for defending the interests of senior citizens, the Democrats have put it in serious jeopardy with this legislation. And they've done so right at the moment when demographic shifts are making the senior population more powerful than ever.

Why create such an imbalance between winners and losers? The Democrats are not fools. Why would they do this?

The answer is pretty simple: to hide the true cost of the bill. They don't want to push a $2 trillion program now because this country is facing the greatest deficit crisis it's seen in decades - and such a price tag does not make for good politics these days.
Lastly, Virginia Attorney General Ken Cuccinelli was interviewed by Greta Van Sustern on his plans to file a lawsuit in Virginia's Rocket Docket challenging the mandate immediately after the bill is signed today. Eleven states in total plan to file suit, including, Florida,South Carolina, Alabama, Nebraska, Texas, Pennsylvania, Washington, Utah, North Dakota, and South Dakota. Greta interviews the Attorney General of Florida by phone as well in the following clip.  Be forewarned  you will have to suffer through about one minute of cat fighting from The View, Greta included in the lead up to the Attorney General interviews. There is a bit of outrage from Rush Limbaugh's show that makes The View clip less painful.

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