Saturday, January 23, 2010

American Politics

To hear some conservative pundits talk, Obama's health care plan is finished and Obama himself is on the way out. Perhaps as a somewhat dispassionate observer, I can make a few suggestions:

(1) don't believe Nancy Pelosi when she expresses doubt over the health care bill passing. Just because the Dems lost Teddy's seat doesn't mean they have given up. Which Senators are on the fence and could be swayed by some pork tossed their way? What options does Pelosi have?

(2) Obama is not finished. I don't like Obama's politics or worldview, but I am under no illusions. If the Republicans want to stage a comeback, they will need to work hard. Victory is possible, but it is not assured. Obama is a resilient, disciplined and crafty opponent.

(3) Republicans have failed because they have failed to provide a compelling alternative to the Democratic health care proposals. Almost every American I talk to expresses concern/fear about health care. Your TV stations are flooded with ads for insurance. It is a national obsession (a fact that is only apparent to those visiting your country). But Republican's alternative is to talk about how bad socialized medicine is. The arguments against socialized medicine might work when Republicans are talking to die-hard Republicans, but the average American seems to want some better options. If you provide some better options, you will be in the drivers seat. If you stick to your dogma, the Democrats will determine what the health care plan is.


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