Where Hillary Clinton failed, the team of President Barack Obama and HHS Secretary Tom Daschle is determined to succeed—and the political momentum is all on their side.
(Page 4 of 4)
“Americans won’t be able to buy the health care plans that they want, because the government, in the same proposal, is going to say what constitutes insurance and what doesn’t,” he said, adding that the public option would also expose the plan’s objectives. “As soon as we create a government insurance plan that will be subsidized by the government, you won’t need to be a rocket scientist to figure out that all competitors will be on life support and will be gone after a period of time.”
He also predicted that Obama would have to reverse his campaign stance and come out in favor of an individual mandate, which is supported by Daschle and represents the only way to get insurers to cooperate. Aside from being unpopular, Shadegg said, mandates have been proven an “abject failure” in Massachusetts, where hundreds of thousands of people remain noncompliant, and also are ineffective in the 48 states that mandate automobile insurance.
Shadegg also observed that in his book, Daschle is “stunningly candid about denying care” as a way to save money. As an example, he quoted Daschle’s lament that “Many patients with insurance want any care that might do some good, and plenty of doctors will oblige them.”
In addition, Shadegg anticipated that Daschle will not be able to abandon his idea of a Federal Health Board, even as the Federal Reserve’s credibility has suffered from its handling of the financial crisis. He said that it “is absolutely essential for what they want to do with the health care system” and crucial to Daschle’s legislative strategy. But it also complicates things from a communications perspective.
“It will be difficult for Obama and Daschle to argue that we are not going to a government-run health care if they insist on a board that decides practices and procedures,” he said.
While acknowledging that many of the large interest groups won’t be on the side of Republicans this time around, Shadegg urged some skepticism. “If you speak to doctors, you will find that the AMA does not speak for many of them,” he said, and insisted that such groups do not represent the sentiments of the American people.
If large businesses support a government takeover of health care, Shadegg predicted that Americans would see that they are asking for a handout from taxpayers. And if Democrats end up, at the behest of the insurance industry, proposing a mandate that would fine Americans who do not purchase the industry’s product, it would show that “we’re not the ones carrying water for the insurance industry, the Democrats are carrying water for the insurance industry.”
Dick Armey warned that while Democrats recharged after their last defeat on health care and laid the groundwork for another push, Republicans became too complacent and will have a lot of catching up to do.
“The United States, after every military conflict historically, we disarmed,” he said, noting that, once Republicans defeated HillaryCare and took back Congress, they similarly stopped worrying and didn’t make the case for reforming a broken system by freeing up the health care market. “The question is, can Republicans reequip themselves to get back into the fray when [Democrats] are breathing down their necks again?”
A man of faith in a godless age is hitting Americans where it hurts.
Mr. and Mrs. American Spectator Reader, let P.J. O’Rourke talk sense to your kids.
In Britain, defending your property can get you life.
It won’t take long for conservatives to scratch this presidential wannabe off their 2008 scorecard.
Was the President done in by the economy, or by the politics of the economy?