Blunt Ad Complains of Cutting Medicare…to Support “Government-Run Health Care”

An ad for Republican Senate candidate Roy Blunt complains that his opponent voted to cut Medicare in order to support "government-run health care."

I saw this ad on TV this morning and it boggled my mind:

Yes, that’s a Republican (who, like most Republicans, has been campaigning against too much spending), who is not only campaigning against Medicare cuts (which are necessary to get the deficit under control), but complaining that those cuts are going to “government-run health care”!

I suppose that since 39% of the American public wants the government to “stay out of Medicare,” there’s no downside to simultaneously campaigning against cutting Medicare and against “government-run healthcare.” But I have to say that it’s sad that the joke about Tea Partiers wanting to “keep the government out of Medicare” isn’t a joke anymore–it’s an actual campaign point…

Ah well. Score another point for Mencken.

FILED UNDER: Campaign 2010, Humor, US Politics
Alex Knapp
About Alex Knapp
Alex Knapp is Associate Editor at Forbes for science and games. He was a longtime blogger elsewhere before joining the OTB team in June 2005 and contributed some 700 posts through January 2013. Follow him on Twitter @TheAlexKnapp.

Comments

  1. And, he’s going to win

  2. Herb says:

    “But I have to say that it’s sad that the joke about Tea Partiers wanting to “keep the government out of Medicare” isn’t a joke anymore–it’s an actual campaign point…”

    Well, to be fair…is Blunt really a Tea Party type? Or is this just further acknowledgment that “Tea Partier” and “Republican” are interchangeable terms?

  3. anjin-san says:

    I guess I should not be surprised when the GOP glorifies ignorance, but I still am.

  4. ponce says:

    “The American People will take Socialism, but they won’t take the label.”
    -Upton Sinclair

  5. Incredible.

  6. ratufa says:

    I live in PA and have been seeing ads since the campaign began about how we should elect Pat Toomey and other Republicans in order to protect Medicare from the Democrats. Some of this is just “tit for tat”, since the Democrats have been pushing the theme that Republicans want to privatize Social Security or do away with Medicare as we know it. The Democrats probably have a better claim to truth on this particular issue than the Republicans (especially Republicans such as Toomey), but such is politics.

    As has been mentioned before on various threads, the real test will come if/when Republicans take control of one or both houses of Congress. At that point, campaign promises about protecting Medicare and Social Security run up against fiscal reality and the Tea Party goals of smaller government, lower deficits, tax cuts, etc.

  7. TG Chicago says:

    The poll you cite seems awfully odd. If I heard that question, I might take it as “Do you want the government to mess with Medicare?” I can easily understand people answering “no” to that question.

  8. sam says:

    “[The] campaign promises about protecting Medicare and Social Security run up against fiscal reality and the Tea Party goals of smaller government, lower deficits, tax cuts, etc.”

    The food fight in the Republican caucus is going to be something to behold.

  9. george says:

    Smaller gov’t always means subsidise departments I use or believe in, and drop the others.

  10. The food fight in the Republican caucus is going to be something to behold.

    What food fight? Oh, you think they’re serious about wanting to cut spending? That’s so cute!

  11. sam says:

    MY point was, the TPers will be, the establishment, not a chance. And that’ll be the food fight, I’m guessing.

  12. The TPers aren’t any more serious about cutting spending. Anyone who starts with the premise that Social Security, Medicare, and Defense spending are all untouchable isn’t serious about cutting spending.

  13. Crust says:

    Someone alert Bill Kristol. Obviously Blunt must be a fictional character invented by the Obama administration…

  14. sam says:

    “The TPers aren’t any more serious about cutting spending. ”

    Yeah, you might be right about that. I was giving them the benefit of the doubt re their rhetoric re cutting spending.

  15. tom p says:

    Common bumper sticker down here:

    “Blunt is NOT sharp”.

    he proves it again (and sadly, yes, he probably will be my next Senator)(mind you, he can’t be much worse than Kit “Backstroke” Bond)

  16. I was giving them the benefit of the doubt re their rhetoric re cutting spending.

    Ask one of them to name the things they’d cut. They can talk about it general terms, but if you want anything beyond soundbites, they’re at a loss. But then, you’re making the mistake of trying to interpret what they say according to the meaning of the words that make it up.

    The Tea Party movement is primarily about identity politics. Phrases like “cutting spending” or “smaller government” or “defending the constitution” are just rhetorical gangsigns to identify themselves as members of the tribe. Any actuall meaning those phrases might have is purely conicidental to their actual function.