The Democratic spin explaining why polls show the public opposed to their health care bill is that voters actually like the individual pieces of the bill but have been turned off by the messy process.
Yesterday, Joel Benenson, a pollster for the Democratic National Committee, reported the results of his own survey done for the Service Employees International Union. It claims the difficulty liberals are having in selling health-care reform “centers squarely on perceptions of a breakdown in the legislative process, exemplified by deal-cutting and special deals for the constituents of key swing Senators.”
But it appears that Democrats are ignoring their own findings. Last week, President Obama backed away from his earlier demand that lawmakers’ special deals be stripped out of the bill. Then there’s Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who yesterday endorsed a parliamentary maneuver under which the House would “deem” the Senate’s health care bill approved without the House voting on it.
Ms. Pelosi actually told reporters: “Nobody wants to vote for the Senate bill.” Her scheme to allow House members to escape political responsibility even drew the ire of the Washington Post editorial page, which has strongly backed health care reform: “What is intended as a final sprint threatens to turn into something unseemly and, more important, contrary to Democrats’ promises of transparency and time for deliberation.”
In ramming through an unpopular 2,700-page health care bill using brute force tactics, Democrats are in danger of passing what amounts to the longest suicide note in history. Their own pollsters are telling them the public has rebelled against their tactics. So their response is to press their foot down even harder on the gas pedal. We’ll see how that works out for them.
‘John Fund is a columnist for the Wall Street Journal’