• The Heritage Network
    • Resize:
    • A
    • A
    • A
  • Donate
  • Morning Bell: Health Care in the Balance as Ground Shifts Under Obama

    One year ago, President Barack Obama delivered his inaugural address at the foot of the Capitol, laid out an agenda of “big plans” for his administration, and chided “cynics” who “fail to understand that the ground has shifted beneath them.” One year later, as voters head to the ballot box in Massachusetts, it seems that the ground very well may have shifted under President Obama.

    And that ground shift might spell trouble for the President’s health care magnum opus.

    In a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll released yesterday, President Obama’s approval ratings have “plummeted to 50%, down from 64% after he took office,” giving him an average 57% approval rating for the year and placing Obama “nearly last in the ranking of former presidents’ first-year job approval averages.”

    Why the dissatisfaction? For President Obama, “big plans” meant a year of “big government” in the form of the nationalization of private corporations, hundreds of billions of dollars in new federal spending and a massive government takeover of health care. Those liberal policies haven’t sat well with a majority of Americans.

    The Washington Post reports that “By 58 percent to 38 percent, Americans said they prefer smaller government and fewer services to larger government with more services.” As the Post reports, that’s 15 percent more people favoring smaller government over larger government since Sen. Obama won the Democratic nomination in June 2008.

    Those anti-big-government sentiments could put the kibosh on President Obama’s hallmark health care legislation if today’s special election for the late Edward Kennedy’s Senate seat doesn’t go the President’s way. Make no mistake, the Massachusetts election is very much about national issues – and President Obama’s liberal agenda. Health care came to dominate the Massachusetts race, and Republican candidate Scott Brown has made no bones about being the deciding vote to block Democrats’ health care reform legislation.

    A Brown victory would be a game-changer in the Democratic Congress’ efforts to pass health care legislation. And that’s a distinct possibility, given the latest Politico/InsideAdvantage poll that puts Brown up over Democrat Martha Coakley by a 52-43 margin. Politico reports:

    “A defeat by Martha Coakley for the seat held by the late Edward M. Kennedy would be embarrassing for the party — and potentially debilitating, since Democrats will lose their filibuster-proof, 60-vote hold on the Senate.”

    With so much on the line, it’s no wonder that President Obama swooped-in to support Coakley in a last-minute get-out-the-vote effort, but it’s questionable whether his Sunday campaign stop or his TV ad on her behalf will be enough to get her across the finish line. In fact, Democrats are already circling the horses in anticipation of a defeat in the Bay State.

    The Hill reports that Democrats are “eyeing a parliamentary maneuver to sidestep the Senate’s filibuster rules to pass healthcare if they lose their supermajority.” And Speaker Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) said Monday, “Let’s remove all doubt, we will have healthcare one way or another.”

    Likewise, Republican leadership are expecting Democrats to pull out the stops to pass health care reform in the event of a Brown victory. “It’s pretty clear that they’re going to use every trick imaginable … to shove this down the throats of the American people,” House Minority Leader John Boehner (R-Ohio) said on Monday.

    Heritage’s Director of U.S. Senate Relations, Brian Darling, explains that if Brown wins today, Democrats will have two options:

    “One would be for the House to take up and pass Obamacare with reconciliation being used as a technical corrections mechanism to allow Democrats to avoid a filibuster in the Senate. Option two would be to drop Obamacare and finally understand that the American people want Congress to scrap this version of health care reform and start over.”

    The first option might give President Obama a much-needed legislative victory for his January 27 State of the Union address, but dropping Obamacare and starting over from scratch would be a victory for the American people. The question is whether President Obama understands – or cares – that the ground has shifted beneath his feet, too.

    Quick Hits:

    Posted in Obamacare, Ongoing Priorities [slideshow_deploy]

    38 Responses to Morning Bell: Health Care in the Balance as Ground Shifts Under Obama

    1. Nichole, Phoenix, Az says:

      I refuse to be forced to do, what is unconstitutional, abortion is completely unconstitutional, and my gun rights will stay with me, till the Lord returns!!!!! I shouldn't have to buy healthcare by force! I also shouldn't have to be choosing between my freedom, and my government!! I oppose all this radical garbage spending, and oppose a larger government!! God will rise!! Thank you all for your hard work!!

    2. Linda Goodman Ital says:

      The key sentence in the above article is whether Obama knows or cares what the American people think. Oh, he knows all right, and yes, he does not care. Nor does Nancy Pelosi. They are hell bent on carrying out THEIR agenda, no matter what the American people think. Just hope they get the message in the next elections.

    3. Jeanne Stotler, Wood says:

      Most americans are fed up, as Abe Lincoln well stated, you can fool some of the people some of the time but you can't fool all of the people all of the time. BHO says he wants to be like Lincoln and Reagan, well maybe he should go back and read some of what both said, particularly LINCOLN. Seeing the lemings being led, makes me know WE NEED to make sure our children are taught REAL American History, parents wake up, if it's not taught in school YOU MUST teach it at home. I have been doing this with my grandson, we have deep discussions and I show him what really happened. Parents, you control the future.

    4. bert,Ohio says:

      Liberals will pass Obamacare whether Coakley wins or not. Why do you think the Obama Administration and their minions are moving so fast and trying to pass as much as they can so the American People will not have a chance to vote to correct these problems and vote out those in office that have done us so much harm.

    5. Alicia Boland, Croto says:

      It is clear that President Obama does not care what the people of

      America want….he gets a failing mark in LISTENING and so do the majority of our representatives. However, they will pay a big price in that they will surely not be reelected. We the People want a representative government and We the People want a return to the values of our Founders and the brillant Constitution that they wrote so that the Will of the People would be heard. New Jersey and Virginia have spoken. Go Massachusetts…We the People are cheering for you.

    6. Bob Veigel, Arlingto says:

      With this administration in power our entire nation is in the balance. It is past time for people to wake-up and realize what an evil group is running our nation.

    7. Lloyd Scallan - New says:

      I continue to be amazed that Obama has an approval rating above the 35 per cent

      of the staunch Democrat/Socialist that infect this country. This poll indicates

      just how so many of the citizens of this country have no inclination to want to look past the left-wing national news media to learn the truth about what this country will turn into if Obama and the Dems are not stopped NOW. It is so discouraging to find so many do not or cannot understand just how much trouble this nation will be in if all the people don't wake-up to the truth about Obama.

    8. Ozzy6900 says:

      The People, especially those that voted who voted for President Obama, are asking themselves: " Where is the Hope?", " Where is the Change?". Unemployment has risen, unemployment compensation has been extended more than any time in History and the only thing on the Administration's mind is forced health care!

      The entire health care or rather, ObamaCare bill is unconstitutional. To start with, the Government cannot dole out health insurance on the stance that it is a "right", THERE IS NO RIGHT TO HEALTH CARE INSURANCE! The Government cannot force the People to buy anything! Yet, this Administration is doing it right in front of our eyes!

      Nancy Pelosi will do anything to deliver the "package" to President Obama, no matter what or Who is violated. This is because she knows that her "hero", President Obama wants so badly to say that Obama-Care passed in his State of the Union speech. To heck with anything or anyone who gets in the way and to heck with the American People and what they want. You see, The Congress, The Senate and the Obama Administration feel that we are children and need to be led by the hand. They feel that we do not understand, nor do we have the intelligence to guide ourselves. So they are forcing this Obama-Care plan down our throats even if it chokes us!

      Meanwhile, businesses are closing, laying off and the Economy that the news media wants us to think is recovering, is sliding slowly but surely into oblivion. Massachusetts has the opportunity to prove to the Democrats that even a staunch, Democrat territory like Massachusetts, will not put up with the flim-flam that the Democrat Liberals are trying to work with Obama-Care. And if the Democrats skirt around the rules to pass it (as I am sure they will), they will finally be exposed once and for all.

    9. Bruce, Massachusetts says:

      Today will be a " BROWN DAY " in The Peoples Republic of Massachusetts !!!!!!!

      If Obama knows or cares what is good for him and his minions he will listen to the people and trash Obamacare.

      If he doesn't, there will be a true revolution in this country.

      Unfortunately, I think Obama only cares about his far left agenda and leading the U.S.A. to socialism which we don't want.

      Semper Fi !!!

    10. LaFayette Bruner, Da says:

      This administration has never been a "Government for the People" but rather an aggenda for socialistic change in our country. No longer does the voice of the majority fall on the ears of our government rather the voices for a huge national welfare program. These are the very ones who beleivee the government should take care of them and that belief is what encourages these people to be less productive. In long term it promotes laziness and lowers self reliance which in turn yields less productivity. Hard work is what made this country and it will take much more of the same to get it back on track. Not government spending.

      L. Bruner

    11. Ken Jarvis says:

      If Mass goes GOP

      I am going to CHANGE MY STANCE

      and let Murdock and Rush decide.

      They have NO idea what to do,

      but they KNOW Obama's way is WRONG.

      So, Let them run the country.

      I am on Medicare

      and YOU aren't

      so, if you lose YOUR job and YOUR coverage.


      That is what YOU wanted.


    12. Don Henry -Charlesto says:

      Excellent analysis-the election in Mass. may well be the tipping point-Obama does not care what the American people want-Reid, Pelosi , and Obama have a socialist agenda in store for America and will stop at nothing to accomplish their goals.

    13. Whicket Williams Kin says:

      Obama is out trying to spend 3.something billion dollars to-day This Man has a major spending problem He thinks it is a presidents job to spend ,spend, tax, spend It would be interesting to see exactly how much he has spent, per day, that would not have been spent if he had not been elected. Why doesn't somebody stop him?

    14. John-Hampton, NH says:

      If Obama cared what we want or think as citizens, he would never try to do the things that will destroy our country as well as the middle class. What do you think 'fundamentally change America' means?

    15. Larry Jeffrey, Leand says:

      I find it disappointing that you continue to be too P. C. to call this socialistic move what it reallyis, Fascist Liberalism. There is a book of the same name that covers the concept and it's history. Educate your self, America!!!!

    16. Jonathan Seid, Willi says:

      Bah! Humbug! The only reason(s) the president and the democrat-controlled congress are having their problems, is that they are spending too much money too fast and are being seen as more interested in taxing those with the least political clout. Americans are supportive of Progressive issues. Try to get rid of Social Security or Medicare and listen to the caterwauling that will follow. The president missed his chance the first year by focusing on health care insurance for all and not on jobs. Now his boat is taking on water and will probably sink. He didn't want to steer the government, he wanted to rule the government.

    17. Pat Norris, Ohio says:

      Obama doesn't care about the American people, he only wants to RULE! We have another agenda and that is to vote out all his socialist "friends" and the sooner the better!! As stated many times, the Sleeping Giant is awake and he is coming THIS YEAR!!

    18. Richard Cancemi, Arl says:

      Half of the people in this country are wise to this fraud of a President and all those who are working, in and out of Congress, to subvert America.

      Hopefully the other half will wake up too, and look at the results of what they plan to do and not what they say.

      The Democratic Party was taken over by Liberals who have now been taken over by radical Marxists. Long-time Democrats have failed or refused to see that the Party no longer exists. Its name is being used by people who are neither democratic nor liberal.

      In many ways the same can be said of the Republican Party.

      We should ALL be independent thinkers and voters and not be fooled by fancy rhetoric or promises, particularly those put forth in generalities, platitudes and oratorical performances.

      I hope the people in Massachusetts ring the bell of freedom today by voting for the anti -government candidate, Scott Brown. It may spell the beginning of the end for this abomination of an administration and congress.

    19. Bill Brownfield, Bev says:

      Well said. Your evaluation, discussion and conclusions are well grounded. And your ability to express them must come from a great parental background.

    20. gordon Storholm says:

      I hope if the Repubs ever get in they make life difficult for ABC, CBS,etc. Imagine the disrespect they showed Bush compared to the deification of Obama. They didn't even stand when Bush entered a press conference. Why doesn't Major G. stay seated when Obama enters?

    21. Bobbie Jay says:

      Ken, no one wants to hurt medicare recipients. The government continues to do that. They've been lying to America all the way through starting with health care being a crisis. If you are Christian, please pray and listen to our Lord. We will be fine. This is a fight for the freedoms that are inalienably human lifes'. No man has a right to take that away. Medicare was established for good intentions and look what government's done to it.

      Obama stated change?" The only change witnessed is the lack of honesty. Deception has increased on a daily basis. Members of government resort to NAME CALLING out of desperation as their lies become exposed. You need medicare, then you should have it. WITHOUT GOVERNMENT CORRUPTION!


      Ken, if something happens to your medicare, don't blame the people, blame the American president who's been putting punishment on the innocent, hard working, self-reliant American.

      Why is government so obsessed with getting this ABORTION PROVISION in? …seems a little suspicious… the whole thing is a mess and needs to be canned!

    22. bradley, illinois says:

      1-19-2010 American people Quote == Barack Obama is a 21st century self-seeker and his White House are a bunch of opportunist

      President Harry S. Truman did say

      "Nixon is one of the few in the history of this country to run for high office talking out of both sides of his mouth at the same time and lying out of both sides" Obama and his White House has put themselves at the top of this Quote

      President John Adams did say

      "Because power corrupts, society's demands for moral authority and character increase as the importance of the position increases"

      The 44th and the 111th Congress are proofing themselves to this Quote

      Philip Bobbitt argues that

      "A democracy cannot … tolerate secret policies" … because they undermine the legitimacy of governmental action … Note to Obama, Pelosi, Reid, remember this,

    23. Al Reasin, Conowingo says:

      With his ideology, this Preident cares not what the people think, and that shalll be his undoing.

    24. Pingback: Why Should Scott Brown Make a Difference? | www.statehousecall.org

    25. Lynn Bryant DeSpain says:

      We can thank President Obama for uniting the American People once more, as they haven't been united since WW11. This time the enemy is the Federal Government.

      Obama has awoken the 'Sleeping Giant' and now must bear the consiquences of his actions.

      One year of mass attempts to control everything that make America gret and good and a Free Republic, is coming back to bite him on his Liberal posterier.

      For this, we can all that God.

    26. Edmon Wheeler, Milto says:

      I have been Praying for our God to take charge of the situation, and it may be this is the way. I am dismayed at both of the major politcal partise, and I hope the party that I usrally vote for will have a canidate that is honest enough to lead us back to the goverment that our founding Father's set up to start with.

    27. H. C. - South Caroli says:

      To answer the question, Obama and his cronies DO NOT care about the American people nor the United States of America, especially our freedom and certainly not our liberty. Those who fail to learn the lessons of history are doomed to repeat them: George Santayana. So, a re-read of Warning to the West or The Gulag Archipelago by Aleksandr I. Solzhenitsyn might be apropos at this time. Couple this with our founding documents and the beliefs of our founding fathers, any you will have both ends of the spectrum. Filling in the blanks should be easy.

    28. ted moore grand prai says:

      If Brown wins the mass. senate election, then it will also be time for the repubilicans to pull out all the stops, It's timefor the GOP to scream from the highest mountain about the dems corrupt, tyrannical , American destroying policies. Where are the voices of the GOP? they should not be pushed around by such a sorry bunch of power hungry politicians,

    29. Leith Wood Richmo says:

      Somewhere in Shakespear is a wonderful line about vaulting ambition that ore leaps itself and lands on the other side. Obama is sure he can keep riding his horse roughshod over the American peoples wishes, but the reckoning is coming and he will land hard in the mud out of the race. Go Scott Brown.

    30. paul collins.the vil says:

      Ken,if you haven't read the parts of obamacare that is out there,I urge you to do so.You are on medicare and are worried about losing it if this bill is not passed.You are worried about the wrong result.Medicare will definitely will be destroyed if it is.It is not about healthcare,but about government control.Obama doesn't care about the people, he wants to dictate us.I don't want to live in a dictatorship.Michell said she was never proud of America until now.I have never been more afraid for my country than I am at this momment.

    31. Pingback: More on Mass – Blog Watch

    32. michael grega says:

      We the people dont mean what it used to mean look for the truth it is time to stop thinking either party has ur best intrest in mind.Look for the truth or kiss ur country good by.google builderberger group and look at all that is gooing on they are winning we need to get Obama out of office and then start voting for the Tea Party members we dont have much time left if we are not to late already

    33. Judy says:

      I have refused to make calls to help Brown who from what I have read from reliable sources is a liberal Republican who is pro-abortion and helped pass forced healthcare on the citizens of Massachusetts in 2006. I cannot compromise on the issue of abortion, not even to stop this bill.When will the Republican Party run a truly conservative candidate?!!

    34. Judith in Michigan says:

      The utter contempt shown by the "Progressive" members of Congress , such as Ms. Pelosi, for the American people is stunning. The mask has finally fallen off. Regardless of who wins the Senate seat in Mass, I expect Republicans and Conservatives nationwide will be energized beyond belief.

      Get ready, America, for the coming battles to save The United States of America. We can either go down the dismal, failed Progressive road to Socialism, or return to our Promise of Liberty, Freedoms and unlimited opportunities for everyone.

      Don't think one person can't make a difference? Look at the impact Mr. Brown has had on the psyche of America. Win or lose tonight, he already is a major winner.

      We all are.

    35. JAY; Akron, OH says:

      Mike, will the House accept and pass the Senate's version of the health care if Coakley loses?

    36. Barbara Utah says:

      The whole congress, senate, and house need to drop the whole Obama Care idea all together. I, a person of one and part of many, don't want it. The Federal Government needs to leave private businesses alone. We have enough problems, as a people. We have too many eyes watching us, ears listening to us and fingers taking our money. actually (what money). The Federal Reserve, figuratively speaking, has taken the lolly pop from the baby. One might ask, What is a forest worth? To all who have had a part in destroying our economy, including ourselves, a tree is worth Trillions.

    37. Maureen Suseck, Boca says:

      My money is on "Obama doesn't care". He and his cohorts will do whatever is necessary to get this bill passed even though the majority of the populace are against it. Obama has too big an ego to let this die. He wants it to be his legacy…if it passes it may just be his political obituary!

    38. Maralynn Johnson says:

      Obama is a narcicist. Notice that When a person criticizes him, he either changes the subject or attacks in retaliation. He is a classic case of narcicism. (sp) He is going by the "Rules for Radicals" by Saul Alinsky verbatim. The thing that the American people need to be cautious of is this. There are progressive radicals in both parties and we need to be vigilent that the republican party presents us with conservative constitutionalist candidates. Even though I respect John McCain as a person, he is not conservative. We need candidates who will reclaim the "blue" conservative values that this country was founded on and let the dems be the 'reds' they have always been.

    Comments are subject to approval and moderation. We remind everyone that The Heritage Foundation promotes a civil society where ideas and debate flourish. Please be respectful of each other and the subjects of any criticism. While we may not always agree on policy, we should all agree that being appropriately informed is everyone's intention visiting this site. Profanity, lewdness, personal attacks, and other forms of incivility will not be tolerated. Please keep your thoughts brief and avoid ALL CAPS. While we respect your first amendment rights, we are obligated to our readers to maintain these standards. Thanks for joining the conversation.

    Big Government Is NOT the Answer

    Your tax dollars are being spent on programs that we really don't need.

    I Agree I Disagree ×

    Get Heritage In Your Inbox — FREE!

    Heritage Foundation e-mails keep you updated on the ongoing policy battles in Washington and around the country.