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Obama giving health care critics upper hand

A president famous for his campaign skills has let the opposition define the debate on health care reform, the central issue of his party and his presidency.

As Democrats faced raucous town halls across the nation this week, President Obama labored to squelch doubts about draft health legislation rather than tout its virtues.

He must turn the debate around by next month, when Congress returns to Washington, many analysts say, or repeat the fate of the last Democratic president who tried to reform health care 16 years ago.

"Obama has lost control of the debate, and when that happens, it's over," said health care consultant Robert Laszewski. "The well's been poisoned."

Few issues are riper for fearmongering than health care. Overconfident Democrats, focused more on covering the uninsured than reassuring those who have coverage, may have moved too far too fast, given growing public skepticism about industry bailouts, a costly fiscal stimulus and ballooning federal debt.

Trying to avoid the mistakes of former President Bill Clinton, Obama left the bill-writing to Congress, where Democratic divisions, scant GOP support and sharp criticism by the Congressional Budget Office and other neutral experts left Obama without political cover when attacks from the right began.

... Continued at http://www.sfgate.com/cgi-bin/article.cgi?f=/c/a/2009/08/14/...

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It comes down to votes

They are convinced all the people opposed to it are plants. They have the votes. And incumbents that play along get the "diebold bump".

SteveMT's picture

Obama and his minions lost this debate, but....

didn't we also win the bail-out, the stimulus. and the GMO food labeling debates. We won these battles, but lost the war in each case.

They are not listening to their constituents anymore. Barbara Boxer said that her email was running 85% against the stimulus, and she concluded that they were all misinformed! These people are no longer answerable to the American people.

Until Obama

ends the wars/occupations and related killing of innocent people and the bankster crony corporatist bail out and Federal Reserve nonsense, he will continue to get more and more trounced in everything he tries to do.

I thought this guy was smart, but he is clearly dumb enough to be currently throwing his hat in with the scum of the world.

Fool.

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