Barack Obama must think American voters are a fickle bunch. After sweeping him into office on a wave of hope and goodwill, many Americans are now rejecting much of what he is proposing. But voters have not changed their minds about what they want.
Rather, many voters, against all the evidence, believed Obama’s promises of post partisanship, moderation and transparency. Now they know better.
As the reality of Obama’s policy proposals has become more graphic, so has the public’s opposition to them. All over the country citizens are exercising their God-given rights of assembly and free speech. And that has put ordinary citizens in the cross-hairs of Obama White House officials and allies who are dishing out politics Chicago style.
Still, the Democrats have been blindsided by the public’s stern resistance to Obamacare. By attacking the opposition instead of its message, the Left shows that it recognizes how unpopular its “reforms” are, while revealing how desperate it is to see them enacted.
Consider the rhetoric being tossed about by Democratic congressmen and party leaders.
One Texas congressman referred to constituents who voiced opposition to Obamacare at a town hall meeting as “a mob.” The Democratic National Committee alleged that Republicans were “inciting angry mobs of a small number of rabid right wing extremists funded by K Street Lobbyists to disrupt thoughtful discussions about the future of health care in America taking place in Congressional Districts across the country.”
A Virginia congressman blamed “the right-wing talking heads on Fox,” for public anger that White House Spokesman Robert Gibbs dismissed as “manufactured.”
If you want manufactured, check out Obama’s media events. This is a president who can’t seem to handle a spontaneous question from anyone (just ask Joe the Plumber) and even plants questions among reporters at news conferences and among hand-picked supporters at choreographed town hall events — regular people not invited.
The Obama White House is upset that some conservative groups might be organizing angry citizens, encouraging them to attend and speak up at town hall and community events with their congressmen. But isn’t such community organizing precisely what President Obama did for years before he entered politics, and what supposedly made him especially fit for office?
It won’t be for lack of spending that socialized medicine fails. The Hill reported last weekend that labor unions and leftwing organizations “will spend between $10 million and $20 million this month to twist lawmakers’ arms over the stalled healthcare reform effort in Congress.”
According to the Washington Post, the Campaign Media Analysis Group estimates that $52 million has been spent so far this year by both sides on health care reform-related advertising, which could make it the biggest advocacy advertising campaign ever. But of that amount, “the largest share — $23 million — has come from groups advertising broadly in favor of overhauling the health care system.”
And “so far, spending in favor of Democratic reform plans ($17.4 million) has dwarfed spending on outright opposition ($8.1 million), according to CMAG.”
Even with such a cash advantage, there’s little passion for socialism. Some Democrats have taken offense at the fervor of those who have spoken up at community events, in online videos and on the radio. But it was Candidate Obama who only a year ago told his supporters to “argue with [Republicans] and get in their face.”
Obama’s media friends blame vocal opposition to the Democrats’ health care reform on “the rightwing base.” But a new Quinnipiac University poll shows that “52 percent of American voters disapprove of the way [the president] is handling the health-care issue and 39 percent approve.” And 57 percent say health care reform should be abandoned if it adds to the deficit, which Obamacare clearly would.
If the share of Americans who oppose Obamacare constituted “the rightwing base,” we wouldn’t even be debating a federal takeover of health care because Republicans would still be in power.
The Left is desperate. They’ve waited years to be in a position to enact their socialist agenda, and their window of opportunity is closing. These spiteful counter-attacks are a sign that the Left realizes how crippling health care reform failure would be. Like Bill Clinton’s botched effort to overhaul health care at the beginning of his first term, an Obama loss would have serious implications for elections this year and beyond.
And so liberals are resorting to what they know best, which is demonizing conservatives. Nancy Pelosi says town hall protestors are carrying swastikas, and liberal commentator Lanny Davis thinks citizens speaking up at town hall events are using “fascist” tactics.
But Pelosi and Davis never seem concerned when university students hurl insults and objects at conservatives who give campus talks, or when liberal student groups storm the stage to prevent conservative speech from being heard. And where is the liberal outrage whenever Code Pink disrupts congressional meetings and military events?
The White House is getting so desperate to squelch dissent that it has posted on its website a petition for public informants to alert them if they “see anything on the web about health insurance reform that seems fishy…”
Sen. John Cornyn on Thursday sent a letter to the president stating his concern that such a solicitation could “chill” “citizen engagement” on the health care reform debate. “I can only imagine the level of justifiable outrage had your predecessor asked Americans to forward e-mails critical of his policies to the White House,” Cornyn wrote.
It is unprecedented for a president and his cronies to demonize on this scale the very people they are supposed to protect and to serve.
My fear, given the high stakes and deep emotions on both sides of the debate, is that union thugs, ACORN activists and leftwing radicals (like the ones who ransacked the streets of Minneapolis and St. Paul during last year’s Republican National Convention) will turn violent and innocent people will get hurt. If that happens, the radical Left will bear the responsibility for attacking Americans who simply reject socialist schemes.