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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 03:46 PM
Original message
" snatching victory from the jaws of defeat"

Comebacker

by digby


Chris Cilizza writes that the numbers on health care haven't actually changed much over the past two months in spite of the August hoohah. And then he sagely notes:

The Gallup numbers provide a worthwhile reminder that even while Washington is consumed with the daily back and forth over health care, the public at large is less invested in the tit for tat inside the Beltway. And, they also suggest that for all the doom and gloom talk regarding how Americans view Obama's health care plan, there may well be room for the White House to pull out a victory on the legislation.

A signing ceremony in the Rose Garden -- and the resultant favorable media coverage -- could well be the last (only?) time some Americans pay close attention to the health care debate and give the president a chance to snatch victory from the jaws of defeat.


Well isn't that good news. But I'm a bit puzzled. Cilizza himself writes in the same piece that polls show that a majority support Obama on health care reform --- and always have. Why in the hell should there need to be "room" to "pull out a victory?" And what "jaws of defeat" is he pulling victory from?

This is typical beltway narrative building. Despite the fact that the teabaggers have done everything in their power to change public opinion, it hasn't worked. Despite the fact that the Republicans have vowed to do everything in their power to kill health reform, it hasn't worked. Despite all the "doom and gloom" talk in the media, people still support the bill and every vote in the congress that has been taken thus far has advanced the bill. But apparently all of this shows Republican strength and it's the Democrats who will be snatching victory from the jaws of defeat if they manage to pass the bill. Same as it ever was.
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 04:18 PM
Response to Original message
1. I don't understand what digby is saying
"Cilizza himself writes in the same piece that polls show that a majority support Obama on health care reform --- and always have". Huh?

Cilizza writes:

43

That's the percentage of Americans who say they approved of the way President Barack Obama has handled the health care debate as compared to 52 percent who disapproved, according to new data from Gallup.

What's fascinating about that number is that it is virtually unchanged from similar surveys in July and August done by Gallup. The July survey showed Obama's approval/disapproval on his handling of health care at 44 percent/50 percent and an August poll put it at 43 percent to 49 percent.


So the Gallup poll has said more disapproved than approved, in July , August and September. The only poll showing more approving Obama's handling is "a CNN/ORC survey in September showed that number moving up to 51 percent".

Digby just seems to have got the numbers back to front, to me. :shrug:

What worries me is this Gallup poll (part of the same one, I guess):

Americans are closely divided as to whether Congress should pass a healthcare bill this year. Thirty-eight percent say they would advise their member to vote for a bill, 40% would advise a "no" vote, and 22% do not have an opinion. When the leanings of those without an opinion are taken into account, 50% of Americans favor or lean toward favoring a bill, while 47% oppose it or lean toward opposition.

http://www.gallup.com/poll/122957/Healthcare-Bill-Suppo...


So it's basically even on whether any healthcare bill should be passed at all. WTF? What the hell did people vote Democratic (both president and Congress) for in 2008, if not to do things like pass healthcare reform?
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babylonsister Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 04:25 PM
Response to Reply #1
2. Seems to me she's calling Cilizza out for talking out of both
sides of his mouth. On the one hand, he says polls show a majority of support for health care reform, but he seems to be siding with the rethug 'strength' while diminishing Dems.
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muriel_volestrangler Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 05:48 PM
Response to Reply #2
4. But that's the point: Cilizza doesn't say "polls show a majority of support for health care reform"
in that article, anyway. And she specifies "in the same piece" in her criticism.

Cilizza is saying the Gallup polls have, for at least 3 months, shown the approval rating for Obama on healthcare slightly below the disapproval rating.
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charlie Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 04:30 PM
Response to Reply #1
3. Same as it ever was
Clinton was elected with a mandate to fix healthcare, too. Medical costs were deemed a crisis nearly 20 years ago, but the fervor for reform was diluted with the same old fearmongering and disinfo we're seeing today. It's been dismaying to watch us bumblefuck ourselves AGAIN.
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rhett o rick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Thu Sep-17-09 06:38 PM
Response to Original message
5. Public opinion doesn't get legislation passed. If it was up to public opinion we'd have
decent health care. So why is that? Congress is the one that passes the laws and they are not beholding to public opinion. Congressional incumbents know that they will not lose in the primaries. So why do they care about "public opinion"? Why doesn't Butt-kiss care about public opinion. Butt-kiss and all the incumbents know that they will have the full backing of the Democratic Party when the primaries come around. And as of yet, the public hasn't demonstrated that their vote is where their poll is. They will poll that they want decent health care but will vote for the incumbent each and every time. So the incumbent know that they only have to worry about CorpAmerica. Will they get the money they need. The votes are guaranteed thru the primaries.
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DCKit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 03:27 PM
Response to Reply #5
6. "Congressional incumbents know that they will not lose in the primaries." Whaa?
The (R)s lost both houses in 2006 and more seats in 2008. In neither case was it solely due to incumbents wanting to spend more time with their families - or their lawyers.
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ieoeja Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 03:33 PM
Response to Reply #6
7. They sure as heck didn't lose those seats in the primaries.

If an (R) loses a seat in the primary, then s/he loses it to another (R).


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DCKit Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 03:45 PM
Response to Reply #7
8. Ah, gotcha. Time to primary some (D) - corporates to send a message...
and run some progressive (D)s against the (R)s in the general election.

However, we're not as strong without Howard Dean and his 50 state strategy. The DNC and Blue Dogs couldn't wait to kick him to the curb. Seems they're just fine with the status quo - 25% (D)-corporate and 50% (R) with a smattering of liberals and complete nutbags.
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rhett o rick Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Sep-18-09 10:17 PM
Response to Reply #6
9. I said Democratic incumbents won't loss in the primaries.
I am not talking about losing in the general. When you write your Congress-critter you are threatening to vote against them in the PRIMARY that's PRIMARY. I am pointing out how hollow that threat is. I agree, if we want to defeat Corp-butt-kiss baucus we can vote republican. BUT BAUCUS, LIKE EVERY OTHER DEMOCRATIC INCUMBENT IS SAFE THRU THE PRIMARIES. Until we, as a party, accept that, we can't fix it.
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