Obama Versus the Open Mike

When he’s not enjoying a round of golf or an expensive vacation at public expense, Barack Obama spends most of his time fund-raising these days.  After delivering a campaign speech at George Washington University on Wednesday, he dashed off to Chicago to raise funds from the evil rich people who want to starve your grandparents so they can enjoy huge tax cuts.  After speaking at one of these events, he forgot his microphone was turned on, and he said some interesting things.

As reported by CBS News, Obama gave this off-the-cuff account of his negotiations with House Speaker John Boehner over the fate of ObamaCare: “I said, ‘You want to repeal health care? Go at it. We’ll have that debate. You’re not going to be able to do that by nickel-and-diming me in the budget. You think we’re stupid?”

One of the many absurdities of ObamaCare is that it has been “nickel-and-dimed” to death, in amounts that would require a fleet of dump trucks to carry all the nickels and dimes.  The much-hated 1099 tax reporting requirements, which would have forced small business owners to complete mountains of paperwork for every vendor they paid more than $600 per year, were supposed to bring in millions of dollars in revenue.  That’s why such a distinctly non-medical provision was included in ObamaCare. 

Obama’s Health and Human Services secretary, Kathleen Sebelius, admitted before a House committee that $500 billion of the revenue for ObamaCare was being double counted.  That’s a lot of nickels and dimes.  On top of that, various small ObamaCare funds – just chump change, a few billion here and there – have been eliminated.  And all those ObamaCare waivers, now numbering over a thousand, would seem to pull a few coins out of the President’s funding scheme.

In his open-mike rant, Obama described his insistence that Boehner separate the measure to defund Planned Parenthood from the main budget bill: “Put it in a separate bill.  We’ll call it up.  And if you think you can overturn my veto, try it.  But don’t sneak this through.”  The issue was indeed moved into a separate bill, where it died in the Senate on Thursday.

Keep in mind this is the President who tried to roll a bloated omnibus spending bill, with all sorts of sneaking things scribbled in the margins, through the lame-duck Congress.  He obviously has no objection in principle to “sneaking” all sorts of things into spending bills.  (Stop sniggering about “Obama” and “principles” being used in the same sentence.  He does have principles.  In fact, he has four of them: make government larger, give taxpayer money to Planned Parenthood, obey labor union management, and do not oppose Iran in any way.)

It’s also profoundly dishonest to accuse Republicans of “sneaking” this defunding measure into the budget deal.  They were practically wearing buttons that said “ASK ME WHY I WANT TO DEFUND PLANNED PARENTHOOD.”  Pro-lifers are not a stealthy crowd.

I hope Boehner is taking notes about Obama’s indiscreet remarks, because they clearly demonstrate why he should have left that Planned Parenthood defunding measure in the budget bill.  Sixty to seventy percent of the American people are opposed to taxpayer funding for Planned Parenthood, depending on how pollsters phrase the question.  Make these creeps own it.  Force them to shut the government down to protect their beloved abortion mill, as most of the Democrat leadership was loudly declaring they were prepared to do last Friday. 

They were clearly scared to death by the prospect.  Boehner had Obama and the Democrats pinned to the mat, and he never should have let them up.  He should learn from his mistake, and make this the very last time this awful President and his party are allowed to set the terms of any debate.  Turn the entire Congress into a hot microphone.