Home > Healthcare > Missing the point on battling healthcare reform

Missing the point on battling healthcare reform

Senate minority leader Mitch McConnell:

The Senate Republican leader, Mitch McConnell of Kentucky, warned Democrats on Tuesday that Republicans would use the issue of health care to bludgeon them in the November midterm elections if Democrats succeeded in passing a comprehensive overhaul.

“It will be the issue in every race in America,” Mr. McConnell said at a news conference in the Capitol. He also referenced the Republican victory in the Massachusetts special Senate election as evidence of the price Democrats would pay if they “jam” a health care bill through Congress “over the objections of the American people.”

Kristin Soltis:

What I find most astounding is how Democrats have passed up an opportunity to both reform health care and remain in a strong position by doing this with a more scaled-down, piece-by-piece process. The best thing the Democrats could do at this point is take the Republicans’ advice and hit the reset button.

These bills are so toxic and so loaded down with nonsense that the American people will be outraged if they pass. Why not start over, bring Republicans on board for commonsense items like tort reform, and come out with a political victory and some change to the system?

This seems to be the consensus on the right with regards to fighting healthcare reform—“Democrats are screwed in November” and “if only Democrats worked with Republicans”.

I’m not going to deny that the momentum is clearly on the Republican side headed into the 2010 midterms, nor will I argue that Obama and the Democrats have no interest in engaging Republicans at all, let alone using Republican ideas in any healthcare bill.

But I find the Republican argument about the 2010 elections to be almost disingenuous.  The Republican caucus can harp all they want about how Democrats will get trounced in November.  The problem is that the Democrats have realized this already and some of them will even take seriously Nancy Pelosi’s orders that they fall on the sword for healthcare reform.

This is no longer about electoral victory in November.  This is about our nation being at a crossroads.  This is about whether we acknowledge that implementing the kind of reforms that Obama and the Democrats want will takes us down the road of ever-increasing statism and more power wielded by the Federal government.  This is about enacting reforms that effectively surrenders any notion that the United States stands above the nanny states of Europe with respect to personal freedoms.

Where are the Republicans pounding the table on those criticisms?  McConnell and the Republican caucus should be screaming about the Democrats’ ideas for reform equal a government expansion so strong that it will be almost impossible to roll back, even if the Republicans do take back both chambers of Congress in November.  Republicans and the grassroots need to do all they can to stop the bill from coming to a vote if possible, and keep up the obstruction.

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