In Politico, Carol Lee writes a report on the Portland, Maine health care reform legislation rally, starring President Barack Obama. After reading the speech summary, one is left wondering, Is President Obama intellectually immature or is he just a school yard bully?
How does one explain the leader of the free world bopping up to Maine - I've been to Portland and it is a nice place - for a campaign style hopey changey rally? The two senators from the state, Senator Susan Collins and Senator Olympia Snowe, declined an invitation to appear with the president. Both are Republicans and both voted against the legislation. Both are frequent targets of far right Republicans because of their ability to work with the other side of the Senate aisle when it is feasible.
So, with the music soundtrack from his 2008 presidential campaign painting the scene, the president takes the stage to speak before a crowd of supporters. Do you find it odd that he has to now campaign for this sweeping legislation after campaigning for the reform over the course of the past year? It proves that the public is only now learning, drip by drip, the actual substance. The president himself was shown to be in the dark as he answered questions just before the bill was signed into law. The Constitutional lawyer in chief doesn't know exactly what he has done to the nation by high jacking 1/6 of the national economy and putting our nation's health care delivery system into the hands of Washington bureaucrats.
The president, who was fond of belaboring the point that our health care delivery system was in urgent need of reform, that we could not wait another week, or month, much less another year, to get it right - to make it true reform in a bipartisan way - now says "It's only been a week" in response to the negative poll results. He wants the public to think, once the legislation is fully implemented, the national opinion will change. Hopey, changey.
The problem is, the legislation does not go completely into action until 2014, 2015, and 2016. How convenient. If Obama doesn't win re-election in 2012, he kicks the can down the road for his successor. One of the favored talking points of the benefits of this mess of a bill was the immediate coverage of children with pre-existing conditions. Turns out, the Democratic leadership botched that. Now they are feverishly trying to use a mulligan on that one.
"It's been a week, folks. So before we find out if people like health care reform, we should wait to see what happens when we actually put it into place." What, that doesn't make you feel any better?
He uses his bully pulpit to be an actual bully, Chicago style. It is difficult to remember a past president who was so condescending and aggressively taunting to the opposite party as this one. He mocks Republicans, then praises them as the situation calls for. Whichever makes his argument better. He claimed some of the GOP ideas were in legislation. Now he mocks them for not voting for it. He doesn't, however, mock the thirty plus Democrats who didn't vote for it. He is silent about that.
This is the first major piece of social legislation ever passed with no support from the minority party. Ever. This is the first major piece of social legislation ever passed with bipartisan opposition.
During the campaign rally in Portland, Obama invoked the name of Minority Leader Boehner, mocking his description of the bill as "Armageddon". The audience booed, so Obama pretended to disapprove of that reaction. "No need to - we don't - we don't need to boo". Yeah, right. That was the purpose of the statement. He also brought up the fact that the student loan delivery system is now under federal control as it was tacked onto the health care reform legislation. Another federal power grab.
President Obama enjoys a unique moment in time. He is reigning with his party in the majority in the House and in the Senate. It is a large majority so the world is his oyster, in Washington, D.C. He knows that if his pet projects are not accomplished before the November 2010 mid-term elections, there is a distinct possibility that his agenda will be stopped. In order to get fence-sitters off their inclination to vote 'no' on the health care reform legislation, he directly appealed to them by stating, correctly, that is agenda would be dead if it was not passed. His presidency was floundering, to put it kindly, and a failed vote would have been the end of his big plans to 'transform' our nation.
The legislation passed and the celebration began - within the Democratic party and the far left ideologues. The majority of the country, however, is far from doing a victory lap. The majority of the country is telling pollsters that this is taking our country further in the wrong direction. This is why the president is still doing campaign rallies, to try to ratchet up support.
This president is a bully. Instead of leading with grace he chooses to mock and scold his opposition. Leaders lead by example. This president is not a leader. This administration is chock full of appointees who have never worked in the private sector. They have never met a payroll, created a business, worried about paying the bills. This administration is filled with far left ideologues, with a penchant for the collegiate world. This president is a politician who is skilled in knowing the right time to pursue an opportunity for advancement, which explains who he ascended to the presidency with so little experience himself. This is not a real world kind of guy.
We deserve better. We need a leader, not a far left ideologue, in charge.