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Bachmann, Gingrich Distance Themselves From Perry’s Position On Social Security

Mitt Romney isn’t the only Republican Presidential candidate who apparently sees Rick Perry’s “Ponzi Scheme” rhetoric about Social Security as a problem for the GOP. He was joined yesterday by two candidates to his right who were clearly eager to distance themselves from Perry.

First, Michelle Bachmann told Radio Iowa’s O.K. Henderson that candidates needed to be more careful in their rhetoric when talking about the program:

I began by directly asking Bachmann if she thinks Social Security is a Ponzi scheme and whether she would favor having states run Social Security.

“Let me say first of all I voted against the bill that the president put forward last December that took $111 billion of revenues away from the Social Security Trust Fund this year. That’s the lowering of the payroll tax,” Bachmann said. “We didn’t see one shred of evidence that that created any jobs. Unfortunately what it did was it not only depleted money into the Social Security Trust Fund, it forced the Social Security Trust Fund to dip into the general treasury, which there isn’t any money there. There’s only moths and feathers in the general treasury which meant we had to either borrow that money or else print money to be able to pay for the Social Security checks. That put senior citizens at risk.

“What I think about Social Security is that the United States made a decision 80 years ago about retirement for senior citizens. I do believe that Social Security is in trouble going forward. It needs to be reformed and modified so that we can keep the promise that’s been made to senior citizens.  We can’t ask anyone that’s on Social Security right now to change their benefits. We just can’t because people have made their plans. They’ve made their live’s decisions in such a way depending upon what they expected was to be an earned income for the remainder of their life.

“But we also know that going forward Social Security has some very big challenges that need to be addressed and I am willing and able to be able to be up to that challenge to deal with the reforms that need to be made to make Social Security solid. But I do think, again, that the decision has been made. We have Social Security and we need to work within that system.”

Bachmann also directly criticized Perry’s rhetoric:

Without naming competitor Rick Perry (although I did in the questions), Bachmann said federal policymakers have to “keep faith” with current Social Security beneficiaries.  ”That’s wrong for any candidate to make senior citizens believe that they should be nervous about something they have come to count on. We need not do that, but I think at the same time we also outline our positive solutions,” Bachmann said. “That’s what I’m trying to do.”

Newt Gingrich also joined in the criticism during a forum with senior citizens in New Hampshire:

Newt Gingrich wrapped his latest New Hampshire swing by calling Social Security “a fact” and drew a distinction from Perry in his approach to the matter.

Speaking to 125 retirees at RiverWoods Retirement Community, Gingrich hit back at Rick Perry on his social security debate remarks.

“Social security is a fact,” he said.

He went on to advocate a plan for those younger than 40 to choose either a personal investment option or the current system.

As I noted earlier this week, Perry’s needs to explain exactly what his position on Social Security reform is, and soon. Letting this “Ponzi Scheme” rhetoric hang out there may not hurt him in the race for the GOP nomination, although that remains to be seen, but it would be potent ammunition in a General Election.

 

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About Doug Mataconis
Doug holds a B.A. in Political Science from Rutgers University and J.D. from George Mason University School of Law. He joined the staff of OTB in May, 2010 and also writes at Below The Beltway. Follow Doug on Twitter | Facebook

Comments

  1. Polaris says:

    I disagree that Perry needs to explain his position soon on SS (although it would be nice I agree). The fact is that right now the only voters that matter to Perry are the GOP Primary Electoral base, and both the So-Cons and Fi-Cons within that base love Perry’s rhetoric on SS, and many would axe the program tomorrow. For that matter a lot of the hard-nosed libertarian republicans that form much of the Tea-party/Fi-Con wing of the GOP would pull almost all entitlement spending down until no two stones stood together and then dance on the ashes. While I am not that extreme about it, those are where my sympathies lie as well.

    Perry’s rhetoric is just fine with these people, and these are the ones that nominate the GOP candidate. As long as Perry doesn’t paint himself into a corner, he can always ‘refine’ his views (or pivot as some like to say) for the GE.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  2. Terrye says:

    Polaris, Yes Perry does need to explain his position. That is not too much to ask of someone running for President. He wrote a book, he made strong statements…why shouldn’t he explain his position and his alternatives.

    I think he is just blowing smoke anyway. I think he is trying to use this issue to gain favor with libertarians and conservatives. His position on immigration has made many of them suspicious of Perry, he needs something to use to win them over.

    If he wants to be taken seriously, then he needs to do something other than run his mouth.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  3. Terrye says:

    Besides, Republicans do care about electability.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  4. Terrye says:

    Polaris, I think you also forget one more thing, not only do Republicans expect their candidates to have answers and solutions,not only do they expect them to electable…they also expect them to remember that not every Republican is an independently wealthy ideologue or something. There are literally millions of Republicans on Social Security themselves.

    I work for a home health care agency. We deal with veterans as well people on medicare and medicaid and private pay. I see people every day who are conservatives and Republicans and they use the same system that everyone else does.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  5. Polaris says:

    Terrye,

    I agree it would be helpful, but I simply disagree. Until and unless there is real polling data that suggests this is hurting Perry’s GE electability (and there isn’t right now), if’s actually Romney that seems to be taking the grief from the GOP primary electorate from seemingly backing the status quo (yes I know that’s not strictly true but that is the perception).

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  6. Tano says:

    @Polaris:

    As long as Perry doesn’t paint himself into a corner, he can always ‘refine’ his views (or pivot as some like to say) for the GE.

    Thats pretty funny. You really think that a little “refinement” is all that is needed to move “Ponzi scheme” into something that the general populace would find acceptable???

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  7. Polaris says:

    @Tano:

    Thats pretty funny. You really think that a little “refinement” is all that is needed to move “Ponzi scheme” into something that the general populace would find acceptable???

    Honestly, yes I do. People believe what they want to believe. There are people that will never believe Perry on this issue, but they probably wouldn’t be voting for Perry or any GOP nominee regardless, so for the purposes of the GOP nomination, their voices don’t count. There are those that believe that Perry is using perhaps unwise rhetoric. It would be very easy for those people to vote for Perry if he pivots on the issue even if he might not be their choice for the nomination.

    Obama was the master of pivoting in 2008. No reason that Perry can’t in 2012.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  8. Terrye says:

    @Polaris:

    Is Romney taking grief? Really? Believe it or not the folks at NRO or talk radio are just talking heads. That is all. They just yak yak yak.

    They are no more representative of rank and file Republicans than unions are of working people. They are an elite themselves.

    I am sure that most people think there are problems with the social security system that need to be dealt with…but in every poll I have seen the majority of the American people support the overall system and want it to survive.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  9. Terrye says:

    And also why is it the perception that Romney supports the status quo? Is is because he is not ranting and raving and running his mouth and throwing around a lot of rhetoric with absolutely nothing to back it up? No, it is because people like Rush Limbaugh who fancy themselves the heart and soul of the conservative base routinely trash anyone who is not on their short list.

    And to be honest, until and unless Perry comes up with an alternative you could say he represents the status quo himself. After all, he has not actually come up with an alternative..all he has done is trash what is already there. He could do that for years and nothing would change.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  10. Tano says:

    @Polaris:

    I challenge you to find any issue on which Obama pivoted, from primary to general election, that comes anywhere close to moving from “ponzischememonstouslieunconstitutional” to “iwillfighttodefendsocialsecurity” – that latter position being what the American people are looking to hear from candidates they would consider voting for.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  11. Polaris says:

    @Tano: The Iraq War for one (getting out, funding therein). There are others, but Obama ran in Dem primary as a far left candidate (which is fair because his record…what there was of it…was pretty far left) and then pivoted to center after he won the nomination.

    As for electability, that was Clinton’s big issue too in 2008. Didn’t do her much good.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  12. Polaris says:

    Terrye,

    Whether you agree with it or not and whether you think it’s fair or not, the “Talk Radio talking heads” have a strong influence in the GOP electorate, and Romney didn’t endear himself to them.

    In order to win the GOP nomination, Romney desperately needs some one in to draw the So-Con/Fi-Con/Tea Party vote from Perry. I’m just stating it as I see it. In the electorate that matters, Perry’s SS rhetoric is probably a net plus not minus.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  13. Tano says:

    @Polaris:

    What the hell are you talking about? Obama’s position on Iraq was identical in primaries, in general and in office.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 4 Thumb down 0

  14. Polaris says:

    @Tano: Really? You must have heard a completely different Obama than I did then. Same for Gitmo to name another.

    Obama has pivoted all over the place. Hell his campaign staff even admits he pivoted to center for the GE.

    There is nothing particularly wrong with this either. It’s normal. Just don’t get caught doing it too obviously is all.

    –Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  15. Tano says:

    Polaris,

    Yes, perhaps I did hear another Obama, since I have not had any reason to view him through the rabid opposition filter.

    Gitmo?? Find me one reference to any disparity between Obama’s primary season position and his general election position.
    Once he took office, he found that closing Gitmo was not going to be practical – but that is another issue. He did not change positions from primary to general.

    WRT Perry, the issue is whether the term “pivot” is appropriate, or what it actually means. If you emphasize certain factors regarding an issue for primary audiences and other factors for the general, that is one thing. But to do a complete 180, from saying that a program is an unconstituional criminal enterprise to saying that you support and defend such a program???

    Good luck with that. That is not “pivoting”. And it is hard for me to imagine how he could possibly get away with it. The Dems sure won’t let him.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  16. Polaris says:

    A strong argument can be made that SS is in fact unconstitutional. However, if you go by Perry’s style of governance in Texas rather than his rhetoric, he can still call SS what he thinks it is (Norm Johnson did this in WI, a very progressive state and WON), and say, (hypothetically) despite my misgivings, I will NOT stop money to those that currently depend on it (at no point has Perry actually said he wanted to get rid of SS entirely….that’s hype from his opposition), and find a way to make the system work in the future in a sane and constitutional way that does not involve breaking promises to younger tax payers.”

    It need not be those exact words, but I think most people would buy it. Those IMO that are ranting most about this wouldn’t have voted for pretty much any GOP nominee anyway.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  17. Tano says:

    A strong argument can be made that SS is in fact unconstitutional.

    Be my guest….

    at no point has Perry actually said he wanted to get rid of SS entirely….that’s hype from his opposition

    Oh, excuse me for making a “hyped-up” inference that a man who would take an oath to defend the Constitution might wish to get rid of an unconstitutional ponzi scheme.

    find a way to make the system work in the future in a sane and constitutional way

    Oh, so you think that their are just some unconstitutional elements in SS that can be tweaked and thus render the program constitutional??? Please, elaborate….

    I think most people would buy it.

    I got three words for you.

    Go for it.

    Here is a fourth:

    Please

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 1

  18. Terrye says:

    @Polaris: They don’t have as much influence as you think, not when they themselves receive these very benefits.

    Remember those townhalls? All those people screaming Leave my Medicare alone? How do you think they will feel about someone even hinting that he might take away their social security? Do you think they will say Oh Well that is okay because Rush said so. I don’t think so. I think Perry is just all talk anyway. He knows he can’t just shut this thing down, so he figures he can talk a good game and con some folks into thinking he really means it..knowing full well that it won’t happen. Not without bi partisan support anyway and screaming about ponzi schemes won’t help make that happen.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  19. Polaris says:

    Terrye,

    I tell you what. If you are right then the polling in Florida and other places with a strong senior vote should show it.

    If the polling does not indicate a decline in support for Perry in spite his public comments, then we’d be forced to conclude that attacking social security might not be the third rail of politics it used to be.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  20. Terrye says:

    Polaris, It is not just senior voting. Most of those seniors have children, grown children and grand children. Do you think it won’t effect their families if they are without benefits?

    I think that if there is not a decline in Perry’s numbers it will probably be because people just don’t take what he says about it seriously. A lot of people just view that kind of talk as rhetoric, if however, they think it might actually cost them or their family something..well then it could be a very different response.

    I remember a lot of people not really thinking that Obama would shove Obamacare down their throats either. When they voted for him they did not think they were going to end up with that monstrosity..if they had he would not be president. By the same token, I think there are a lot of folks who just think Perry is being a tough guy but he does not really mean it. If he can convince people that he just wants to reform the system I don’t think it would hurt him that much, because most people accept that things will change. But if he gives them the impression that he does not care about what happens to them..then I think it will hurt him.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  21. Polaris says:

    Terrye,

    I agree, but that also homes in on what I was trying to say earlier. I don’t think Perry really believes it either (not that it would bother me if he did). Whatever his rhetoric, Perry’s actual record as governor is quite moderate for the conservative state that he’s governor of. Surprisingly so in fact.

    When it comes down to brass tacks, I don’t think Perry’s rhetoric hurts him because people do want to hear the truth (or at least the facts) about their entitlement programs now more than ever, and Perry’s rhetoric will likely be interpreted in that light. That’s my take anyway.

    The polls over the next several months should give us some data as to how the electorate as a whole is reading it.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  22. Tano says:

    @Terrye:

    I remember a lot of people not really thinking that Obama would shove Obamacare down their throats either. When they voted for him they did not think they were going to end up with that monstrosity..if they had he would not be president.

    I find that to be totally absurd. Obama, and Clinton spent two years campaigning against each other with their health care programs front and center. How on earth could any sentient being live through that campaign and conclude that either of them would do anything other than try to pass their program? How can anyone claim that he (or she) would not have been elected had the people known they would push healthcare, when they spent years campaigning on promises to do just that?

    Of course, Obama did not “shove” his program down anyone’s throat – it was argued and debated and shaped for a year by the people’s representatives. Nor do I think it a monstrostiy – quite the contrary. But that is another argument for another day.

    I think there are a lot of folks who just think Perry is being a tough guy but he does not really mean it.

    That may be. But if he emphasizes his views on SS even 10% as much as Obama and Clinton spoke about healthcare, then people are going to take him seriously. This is not a game.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  23. Polaris says:

    Tano,

    Nobody thought that Obama was really serious about Obamacare or even if he was that he’d be willing to destroy the Dem’s political capital over a program that was (and remains) widely unpopular. Well…almost no one. On HHR I was one of two regulars there that did think that Obama would do anything and pay any political price for it, but mine was a voice in the wilderness early in 2009 on that. Why? I knew that Obama was an ideologue based on his record that I managed to dig up. Most didn’t want to believe it.

    Perry is different. He talks like an idealogue and he does believe what he says, but he’s not. Push come to shove when actually running things, Perry will stick with what works over what he might prefer ideologically. We have many years of executive experience to examine in his case, to see that this is true. One of my problems with Romney (who btw I’d vote for with no qualms if it came to it), is that he doesn’t have principles.

    IMHO you need to have principles but you can’t let those principles get in the way of going stuff done.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  24. Tano says:

    Nobody thought that Obama was really serious about Obamacare

    That just crazy man. Who are you talking about? You really think that the American people would listen to a candidate campaign on an issue, day in and day out for two years, and then conclude that they were just joking or something?

    Are you unaware of the fact that passing a universal healthcare bill has been the number one priority for Democrats for decades?

    What is HHR?

    I knew that Obama was an ideologue based on his record that I managed to dig up. Most didn’t want to believe it.

    Thats funny. Obama is obviously not an ideologue Far more the pragmatist, to the great consternation of his base. But he does believe in certain things, like universal health care. So that is why he advanced it, but at the same time let the Congress hash out the details of a plan that was not ideologically rigid, but could win broader support.

    And you do know, don’t you, that almost every part of Obamacare is solidly popular, even though the package as a whole runs at around -10 in popularity. No doubt because most people know precious little about what it actually contains, but just hear the hyperbolic propaganda from the opponents.
    I guarantee you that within a decade no politician will dare to go after it.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  25. anjin-san says:

    I am curious about what Perry’s principals are. Well, except of course for “we don’t really need firefighters.” I know about that one…

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 3 Thumb down 0

  26. Polaris says:

    Obama is no more a pragmatist than my pet AIrdale and I don’t have a pet Airdale. The signs concerning Obamacare in the polling were obvious long before 2010. It was and remains grossly unpopular, and the more people learn of it, the more unpopular it becomes. That’s just a fact. It’s also a fact that the Dems paid a horrific and totally predicable political price for putting heathcare over the economy….and Obama did it anyway.

    That’s the act of an Idealogue.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  27. Scott O. says:

    @Tano:

    What is HHR?

    Whatever it is I’m sure it’s got plenty of ads for tin foil.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  28. Tano says:

    Polaris,

    I gotta say, you seem to have an appropriate name. You seem to come from some very distant world, far away.

    Obamacare, as I am sure you know, was designed around a plan originally devised by the far right think tank – the Heritage Foundation, back in the nineties. These ideas formed the framework for the plan implemented by a Republican governor, Mitt Romney in MA.

    The Democratic ideologues wanted a single-payer health care plan. Obama didn’t push that and then cave on it – he never even pushed it at all. If there would be no single-payer, then at least the Dems would have wanted a public option. Once again, Obama did not even try to get that – he dismissed it out of hand.

    So you have basically a Republican version of healthcare advanced, with no attempt to structure it the way the Democrats really want, and you have somehow managed to convince yourself that this is the work of a leftwing ideologue.

    I think you need to step back from the punchbowl and see the larger picture.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 1

  29. Tano says:

    @Polaris

    It was and remains grossly unpopular, and the more people learn of it, the more unpopular it becomes. That’s just a fact.

    Not surprisingly for a rightwinger, you seem to have a real problem with “facts”.

    LINK

    Thats a minus 7 in popularity (which includes all the people who oppose it because it is not liberal enough!) , and virtually unchanged for a year and a half. I.e..very different from your characterization.

    :

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  30. Polaris says:

    Tano,

    So a sixty seat dubbing in the house (and an 8 seat drubbing in the senate) was just my imagination too? The irate town halls over Obamacare were just my imagination too?

    Keep telling yourself that……. (and you have the nerve to call *me* reality challenged….)

    -Polaris

    Edit: BTW, nice neutral objective link there bud guaranteed to view the polling data objectively….NOT. Please don’t insult our intelligence by linking to Huff-Po and claiming it’s anything other than a “Progressive” cover/propaganda please.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 3

  31. Polaris says:

    If you look at the aggregate data at Pollster.com, you find that at best attitudes towards heathcare have hardened, and the raw data doesn’t talk about liberal or not liberal enough.

    The people don’t like Obamacare, that attitude has not changed in more than a year, and if anything the dislike is either constant or even (very slightly….can’t tell within MOE) expanding, so I’d say my characterizing is pretty much accurate.

    -Polaris

    Edit: As for healthcare, a national healthcare system has been the holy grail of the progessives/dems in the US since the UK did it back in 1947. Obama took what he could get. If he could have gotten a single-payer system through congress, you can bet your bottom dollar (or better Rembini these days), he would have.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  32. David M says:

    @Polaris: There is no chance that pollster.com is progressive cover/propaganda. None.

    It’s always been the fact that the individual parts of health care reform poll better than the mandate or the entire package. It’s also common knowledge the group of people that approve of health care reform or thinks it was too conservative is larger than the group that disapproves of it because it was too liberal. And that’s after the death panel garbage and fake controversy over the constitutionality of the mandate.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  33. Polaris says:

    David M,

    The link was to huff-po. The raw data came from pollster.com (and their editorial is also rather progressive) but the raw data does not back the claims that the huffpo piece was making. Sorry but it doesn’t. Also define “common knowledge”. The backlash against congress for doing healthcare must of been my imagination. The Dems did not get drubbed in 2010 after all.

    OK….

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 2

  34. Tano says:

    @Polaris:

    Please don’t insult our intelligence by linking to Huff-Po and claiming it’s anything other than a “Progressive” cover/propaganda please.

    If you actually looked at the graph, you would see that it is a compendium of all polling done on the issue. Not some partisan opinion.

    So a sixty seat dubbing in the house (and an 8 seat drubbing in the senate) was just my imagination too?

    No they weren’t. I never claimed that the Democrats won the last election. That doesn’t change the actual facts about particular issues, ya know…

    The irate town halls over Obamacare were just my imagination too?

    An infinitesimally small number of people relative to the size of the electorate. No matter how loud anyone shouts, they only get one vote.

    at best attitudes towards heathcare have hardened, and the raw data doesn’t talk about liberal or not liberal enough.

    What does that mean? Hardened? There is, and has been a small negative tilt to the numbers – not some “gross unpopularity”. And opinions have been incredibly stable, not getting worse. You may two completely false claims – just admit it.

    And the questions ask for support or opposition, thats all. The questions do not specify whether opposition comes from the left or the right. Thus the disapproval numbers entail both.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  35. David M says:

    @Tano: Actually, they do poll where the disapproval comes from every so often. Of course it shows that the approve + “disapprove b/c not liberal enough” groups are larger than the “disapprove b/c too liberal” group.

    I’ve seen plenty of polls that split up where the disapproval comes from, and I don’t recall one where that wasn’t the result. And really, it’s just common sense that there would be a group of people that wanted single payer and weren’t satisfied with the result.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  36. Polaris says:

    I have yet to see a poll that showed support or even demand for a single payer healthcare system.

    However, the two of you can think what you like. It just means another electoral drubbing I guess.

    -Polaris

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 2

  37. David M says:

    @Polaris: There’s definitely some support for single payer in the USA. Even if you don’t like single payer, and don’t want to see it, the idea that a decent number of Americans support the idea of it shouldn’t be unexpected.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 0

  38. Terrye says:

    The Democrats passed Obamacare on a strictly party line vote. It is absurd to try and blame it on Mitt Romney.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  39. Terrye says:

    @Polaris: Yes, Perry’s record as Governor is moderate in many ways. One thing I have noticed and it might be just be Perry fatigue down in Texas, but his poll numbers are not that good down there. He might won the election, but there are real divisions in the Republican party in Texas and the Democrats don’t like him either.

    I think the last numbers I saw on Perry were 42% approval in his home state.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 0

  40. Terrye says:

    @Tano: Tano, I think people thought that Obama might do something to make health care cheaper. They were pretty damn fuzzy on the details. However, the bill that the Democrats ended up passing was not exactly what they had in mind…and I think that the Democrats were just as damaged by the way it was passed, as by what they passed.

    So yes, I think most people thought that magic man would come in there and do something wonderful to make stuff better…but the mandate? I don’t think it ever occurred to most people that there would be something like that..and it did not occur to them that the Democrats would make cuts in Medicare to pay for it.

    My agency is right on the brink of going under. There are a lot of reasons for that, but one of them is that the Obama administration has greatly reduced reimbursement to providers for health care visits for our Medicare patients. They did that to help pay for a plan that most Americans did not even want.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 0 Thumb down 1

  41. Tano says:

    @Terrye:

    The Democrats passed Obamacare on a strictly party line vote. It is absurd to try and blame it on Mitt Romney.

    Huh? What is that supposed to mean?

    I guess you are referring to my comments, since I am the only one who mentioned Romney. Why do you think I was trying to “blame” him???

    I think Obamacare is a very good thing, so there is no “blame”, only credit to go around. And I do credit him for having the courage and foresight to implement a similar program in MA. But the point of my comment was simply to point out to someone who seems rather disconnected from reality that Obamacare is not some radical lefty program. The core structure of the program was designed by a rightwing think tank, and a version of the plan was implemented by Romney.

    As I am sure you are aware, Obamacare failed to get any GOP support (except for Olympia Snowe on one of the early votes) because of party discipline enforcing the overall GOP strategy of absolute opposition to anything and everything Obama proposes. If the Republicans in Congress were to somehow be freed of these obligations to party, there would have been some substantial amount of support, based on their own histories of positions on this issue.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 1 Thumb down 1

  42. Tano says:

    @Terrye:

    the bill that the Democrats ended up passing was not exactly what they had in mind…

    Once again, I do not know how you can say that. Obama and Clinton spent many long months on the campaign trail (and they received extensive coverage in the media) arguing the details of their respective health care plans, the two plans actually being pretty similar, except for the existence of a mandate, and both being very similar to the eventual bill that was passed.

    I realize that there is a lot of cluelessness out there amongst the public, and maybe especially amongst the people Polaris and you hang out with :), but really now… this plan was one of the best advertised campaign promises we’ve seen in a long time.

    Like or Dislike: Thumb up 2 Thumb down 0

  43. An Interested Party says:

    So a sixty seat dubbing in the house (and an 8 seat drubbing in the senate) was just my imagination too?

    Umm, that might have had a little more to do with the state of the economy and a lot less with any alleged dislike of PPACA…

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