Skip to comments.Democrats expressing buyers’ remorse on Obama's healthcare law
Posted on 04/20/2012 8:18:29 AM PDT by Sub-Driver
Democrats expressing buyers remorse on Obama's healthcare law By Julian Pecquet and Sam Baker - 04/19/12 08:45 PM ET
An increasing number of Democrats are taking potshots at President Obamas healthcare law ahead of a Supreme Court decision that could overturn it.
The public grievances have come from centrists and liberals and reflect rising anxiety ahead of Novembers elections.
I think we would all have been better off President Obama politically, Democrats in Congress politically, and the nation would have been better off if we had dealt first with the financial system and the other related economic issues and then come back to healthcare, said Rep. Brad Miller (D-N.C.), who is retiring at the end of this Congress.
Miller, who voted for the law, said the administration wasted time and political capital on healthcare reform, resulting in lingering economic problems that will continue to plague Obamas reelection chances in 2012.
Rep. Dennis Cardoza (D-Calif.) also criticized his partys handling of the issue, and said he repeatedly called on his leaders to figure out how they were going to pay for the bill, and then figure out what they could afford.
Cardoza, who like Miller will retire at the end of the Congress, said he thought the bill should have been done in digestible pieces that the American public could understand and that we could implement. RELATED ARTICLES
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The most recent wave of misgivings from Democrats began with Rep. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), who told New York magazine that Democrats paid a terrible price for healthcare.
Frank said Obama had erred in pushing the legislation after GOP Sen. Scott Browns January 2010 victory in Massachusetts, which took away the Senate Democrats 60th vote.
Most of the second-guessing has come from retiring members such as Frank and Sen. Jim Webb (D-Va.), who this week predicted the law will be Obamas biggest downside heading into the November elections. Such members can afford to be more candid in speaking their minds without offending their leadership, but are also likely to reflect the feelings of other lawmakers in the House and Senate.
To be sure, the comments from Frank and others have stirred up supporters of the law, who say the criticism is misinformed.
Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-Pa.), for example, took issue with Webbs suggestion that the president should have given Congress more direction on the issue. Webb said the way the law was passed cost Obama a lot of credibility as a leader.
Maybe if you werent on one of the committees you wouldnt have known that, but the administration was super involved with it, said Schwartz, who served on the Ways and Means Committee when the healthcare law was approved.
Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Calif.), who helped write the law as chairman of the Energy and Commerce Committee in 2010, compared Franks comments to Democratic hand-wringing during the year-plus legislative debate. Democrats were divided over what Obama should tackle first, and the White House was repeatedly urged to abandon the effort.
Waxman said Obama made the right decision and brushed off the latest round of second-guessing.
I dont know that it makes a lot of difference one way or the other, Waxman said. People can say what they think. People were saying it at the time. People said publicly, and to the president personally they called on him not to go forward with healthcare, even in the White House. And he, to his credit, stood as a stalwart supporter of getting that job done.
Frank, he added, eventually got the financial reform bill he wanted.
Democrats have already suffered defeats blamed on the healthcare fight.
The party lost 63 seats and control of the House and six seats in the Senate in 2010, a little more than a half-year after Obama signed the healthcare bill into law.
It did hurt us, theres no doubt about it. The climate out there was really ugly because of it, said Rep. Norm Dicks (D-Wash.), who is also retiring at the end of this Congress.
But Dicks argues the party isnt likely to suffer much more because of the law, regardless of the Supreme Courts actions.
Its just not an issue. Its all the economy, Dicks said. We paid a big price two years ago. But weve already paid it.
Others arent so sure.
Former Rep. Artur Davis (D-Ala.), who lost his primary for Alabama governor after voting against the law, said healthcare remains an albatross for Democrats in 2012, and will be even more of a problem if the Supreme Court overturns the law in June.
I think the Affordable Care Act is the single least popular piece of major domestic legislation in the last 70 years. It was not popular when it passed; its less popular now, Davis said. I think the worst thing that could happen to Barack Obamas reelection campaign would be if he had to spend four months this fall explaining what ObamaCare 2 would look like.
Democratic strategist James Carville and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid (D-Nev.) are among the heavy hitters in the party who have argued the Supreme Court would help Obama by rejecting the law.
Theres a significant school of thought that the administration is puts them in a better position for the election if its turned down, Reid told reporters after oral arguments.
The White House hasnt offered similar predictions, but Obama isnt running away from his signature Affordable Care Act, either.
An uninsured father with a cancer diagnosis could have been a short, sad story, Obama tweeted Thursday. Thanks to the #ACA, its not.
They’re only reacting to polls. If the numbers flipped in favor, they’d be crawling over each other to crow about how they helped “make history.”
In reality, dems NEVER feel any sort of remorse or regret over the advances of big government.
The ditz said that we had to pass it to find out what was in “it”. Now that we know what is in “it” and the thousands of pages that have been added since it was passed, how do we unpass “it”?
So now we see Barney Frank and these other Democrats expressing regret about this bill.
Yet we also keep hearing that people like the bill, when they find out what’s in the bill. Or to paraphrase Nancy Pelosi, we have to pass the bill to find out what’s in it.
It’s amazing to me that two years after this has passed, we’re still finding out what’s in it. And we’re still being told that once we learn what’s in the darn thing, then the American public will support the bill.
This bill is the poster child of what not to do. This bill is a prime example of why Congress should not pass 2000 page bills which no one has read, and why Congress should not rush through votes on such bills.
If I recall correctly, parts of this bill were still being re-written hours before the final vote. So there’s no way that any responsible member of Congress would have had a chance to read and understand what the heck he/she was voting on. But good Democrats shoved it down our throats anyway................
Till it costs them their welfare (read: salary) checks because they've been voted out. The ones who are retiring are getting out so as not to be rejected by the voters.
My guess is that the results of the preliminary SCOTUS vote have been leaked and that the mandate is going down. Dem. Rep. Cardoza's comments from the article are particularly interesting.
"Cardoza, who like Miller will retire at the end of the Congress, said he thought the bill should have been done 'in digestible pieces that the American public could understand and that we could implement.'
Sounds to me like the leak may include the conclusion that the mandate is not severable, and the whole thing must go.
Democrats: Oh, please, re-elect us. We made a mistake passing obamacare and we’ll repeal it if you put us back in charge.
And the zombies get back in line and vote to re-elect them.
A copy of your last year's 1040 income tax return.
A marriage license state issued.
A copy of a lease or mortgage document naming husband and wife as residing at the same address(no more than six months old).
A state issued copy of each dependant's birth certificate(long form).
This is in advance of the new health law under Obamacare, as they begin to comply with it's rules.
While the Republicans are often a source of disappointment, at least they held firm on this piece of crap, FWIW.
You know, if Frank had shown just an ounce of leadership during "debates" of this law--if he or other now remorseful Democrats would've challenged its passage just a little, it would never have received the votes to pass.
If upheld, this law will keep Democrats in power for decades. It will cement the way business is done in Washington, and it will change the entire debate of elections.
Think about it. In a nutshell, the conservative (and sometimes) Republican platform is centered on personal responsibility, smaller government, and more individual freedoms. The Democratic platform is about creating classes and voting blocs by getting people dependent on the government for things they should be doing for themselves.
If the ACA is left to stand, how do Republicans compete in that environment? They become Democrats, that's how. If the law stands, and people are dependent on the government, how does a Republican win with their traditional, smaller government message? Democrats will be talking about "making investments" in the nation's healthcare program. Who wins in THAT debate?
The republicans won't nullify it, they could if they get the Senate back but they won't. They claim they don't like it but most of them make statements like "well there are some bad things in there but there are good ones too so we need to fix it". In other words, they want government run health care too, just don't want Obama to get credit.
The only hope is that our true overlords, the unelected and unaccountable Supreme Court, will toss it. If they don't, it's never going away until it breaks the country. That's how far we've come as a republic, to the point where our freedom hinges on the whims of lifetime appointee judges.
But not everyone must prove they are a citizen."
Dicks, you're a dick.
If not overturned, we'll be paying for it forever.
Don’t Believe It For A Second ping. Thanks Sub-Driver.