As the final round of the battle over health-care reform begins Sunday, President Obama and the Democrats are in reach of a historic legislative achievement that has eluded presidents dating back a century. The question is at what cost.
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Balz attempts to frame the consequences of today's vote for the Democratic Party by looking to the past, and by seeking the perspective of a variety of voices. He's more successful with the former than the latter. Do I lend any credence to what Newt Gingrich thinks about what the votes means for the Democratic party? Not really.
The piece sounds like an argument out of the Republican Coat Room. An alternative take: Obama passing health care without Republican support proves Democrat power.
The automatic links inputed are horrible. Linking to internal WaPo definitions of things like "Republican Party," but not sourcing the assertion "[HCR] helped spark the grass-roots "tea party" movement…"
Thoughtful analysis of the what's at stake for the Democrats, as they attempt to pass their health care bill today. The author provides interesting factual information comparing the partisan split on this bill versus Medicare and Social Security, pointing to the growing gap between Republicans and Democrats. Well sources, with helpful context about this complex issue.
Like so much political discourse these days, this piece uses one piece of unexamined narrative to produce another, and so on.
As Kurt Vonnegut once remarked, if things were different, other things would be different, too.
This piece begins with the COW that HCR reform is overwhelmingly unpopular with the public and is being passed despite their wishes. That assertion has been well litigated elsewhere and found to be less than convincing.
It is much more salient as a journalist to challenge the conventional wisdom and ask what price the right pays if it continues to debate an issue when the public is ready to move on?
That would have been a good Sunday think piece.
More on point at this stage, when passage is assured, is how the public will come to view a president who put his personal prestige on the line for something in which he deeply believed?
It is much more reasonable to believe that Obama's approval ratings will turn upwards, as will those of his party as the elections near.
If the right continues to negatively harp on this issue in the summer and fall, what will be historic will be its inability to gain seats in an off-year election.