Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Rage Against the Obama Machine

Gary Bauer, Campaign for Working Families, documents that anger against Obamacare runs across party lines.

The People Are Speaking Up!

Democrat John Dingell of Michigan is the dean of the House the Representatives. He’s been in Congress since 1955 and is the longest serving member of Congress today. He also happens to be the lead sponsor of the nationalized healthcare bill, a cause he has been fighting for since 1955. Every two years, Dingell is reelected by wide margins, and Barack Obama carried 66% of the vote in Dingell’s solidly Democrat district.

Last week, Rep. Dingell held a town hall meeting on healthcare reform, and the Washington Times was there to cover the meeting. Consider these two statements from folks who attended:

  • “It seems to me this is a push to nationalizing everything. The government has put us through so much financial stress. It’s burdensome on all Americans, and the middle class will be squeezed out, for sure. I’m not in favor of it. I’m very angry."

  • “I don’t want government deciding if I can have a hip replacement or whether I should just be in a wheelchair for the rest of my life. …This is Big Brother. And to hear Barbara Boxer and Nancy Pelosi talk about a mob scene at these events. There are no buses out there. People are so mad, but our elected officials are not listening, so this has become festering frustration. I fear if we don’t do something, this is going to be shoved on through.”

The first quote does not come from a wealthy business executive, but from a 63 year-old retired social worker – not your stereotypical Republican voter. The second quote is not from a conservative activist, but from a retired elementary school teacher and union negotiator, and a registered Democrat.

Beyond the anecdotal evidence, numerous polls prove ObamaCare is not popular. Two weeks ago, I reported on five polls conducted in a 24-hour period that all measured broad opposition to socialized, government-run healthcare. Yesterday, pollster Scott Rasmussen released a new survey of likely voters. Here are the key findings:

  • 42% of likely voters support the congressional healthcare reform plan; 53% oppose it. Those figures represent a 16-point swing in the past two weeks against the bill.

  • The intensity of opposition to the bill is twice as strong as the intensity of support for it: 44% of voters strongly oppose the bill, while just 26% strongly support it.

  • Now get this: 62% of independent voters oppose the congressional healthcare reform bill and 51% strongly oppose it! Among senior citizens, 46% are strongly opposed.

  • 51% of voters believe that the quality of healthcare will get worse if this bill passes (26% think quality will improve), and 51% of voters also believe that costs will go up if this bill passes. Only 19% believe Obama’s argument that a thousand-page, trillion-dollar “reform” bill, full of government mandates, will make costs go down.

Politicians like Nancy Pelosi know full well what these polls are saying: The people do not want ObamaCare. They know the outrage at the town hall meetings is not manufactured, but very real as the intensity of strong opposition measured in these polls demonstrates. That is what makes the Left’s desperate attempts to dismiss the concerns of so many citizens so dangerous. Their statements about “Astroturf” are so obviously disingenuous that they invite further backlash. And labeling fellow citizens as “un-American” is just throwing gasoline on the fire.

At least one liberal is honest enough to admit it and is now calling for Pelosi to resign. We won’t convert Camille Paglia to a conservative crusader anytime soon, but many Independents are having buyer’s remorse and they are coming our way.