According to CBS’s Mark Knoller, Obama’s first year included 411 speeches, comments and remarks, (52 devoted to health care), 42 news conferences, 158 interviews, and 23 town halls. Considering there was a total of 634 appearances within a year consisting of 365 days, the excessive over exposure of the current POTUS becomes obvious… and tiresome.
As we approach that time old, annual tradition of a Presidential State of the Union address, we have to wonder… just what’s left to say? More importantly, are we going to hear anything different? Or just the same Obama campaign agenda, repackaged for more oomph?
The media’s already at work, fantasizing the appearance of a new and improved Obama Wednesday night. According to AP’s Ben Feller, Obama’s message is to be… “yes, I get it”.
In a time of deep economic insecurity, Obama will use this stage on Wednesday to offer hope after a grueling, grinding first year of his presidency, aides say. For the many who think the United States is still on the wrong track, Obama will attempt to present a clearer sense of how everything he’s pursuing fits together to help.
And for jittery Democrats facing re-election this fall, Obama will seek to give them an agenda they can sell to voters.~~~
Obama will propose ways to help the middle class. But any new ideas probably will play a supporting role to the plainspoken narrative he wants to tell, that his agenda works for people despite their growing doubts.
“Obviously you want to write a speech in a way that is interesting enough that people want to listen, and that leaves them feeling a sense of momentum and progress,” senior Obama adviser David Axelrod told The Associated Press. “But these are serious times. I don’t think this is a time for rhetorical flights of fancy.”
Despite Axelrod’s attempts to diss any “rhetorical flights of fancy” and hopes to leave the nation breathless with awe and new found energy, the substance of an unchanging, government heavy agenda thrust – by all accounts – remains the soup de jour. The speech will apparently be nothing more than the same ol’, same ol’, repackaged to rally the base.
Despite the “Yes… I get it” fanciful headline, Obama plans to stubbornly defend a losing agenda, and continue to turn a deaf ear to polls and elections with devasting results in the bluest of blue states, Massachusetts. Because, despite the plethora of SOTU subjects, what will be at the top of the SOTU list is health care.
It is because of this “no, Obama, you *don’t* get it” fact that the WH and DNC hired on campaign gun, David Plouffe, to repackage the O’agenda for public consumption. Expect Obama to link health care with the economy – capitalizing on Plouffe’s new campaign tactics this week – at every turn of phrase. But before they can recast the talking points, they first have to explain away Scott Brown.
To this end, the spin on the MA loss rises to desperate volume as O’mouthpieces, Gibbs and Axelrod daily mischaracterize the election results … insisting that MA voters do indeed support a national healthcare program. This is their justification for continuing to explore how – and when – to push thru the existing O’health care proposals.
Gibbs said discussions are happening now on timing and whether it is now or in a few months after Congress works on job creation.
“We’re working with leaders on Capitol Hill to try to figure out the best path forward,” Gibbs told “Fox News Sunday.” We don’t know what that is quite yet … The problems that existed in American health care that existed a year ago or a week ago continue today.”~~~
Gibbs said that Brown may have campaigned on stopping the health care bill but that’s not why voters elected him over Democrat Martha Coakley.
“More people voted to express their support for Barack Obama than to oppose him,” Gibbs said.
“Seventy percent of the voters in Massachusetts wanted to work with Democrats on health care reform, only 28 percent want to stop health care reform from happening. … If Republicans want to assume that the outcome of what happened in Massachusetts is a big endorsement of their policies when 40 percent are enthusiastic about them and 58 percent are angry about them, then I hope this misread that election as badly as anybody could,” Gibbs said.
Obama adviser David Axelrod said voters want Republicans to work with Democrats to fix problems in the health care system, not to obstruct those efforts. He added that it would be politically foolish for lawmakers who supported the overhaul so far to walk away from it now.
Explaining away Brown and repackaging health care now rests on deliberate and calculated misrepresentation of MA voters by the numbers – ala “only 28 percent want to stop health care reform”, while “70 percent” wanted bipartisan health care. Only a WH filled with pompous blowhard elitists would think they can sell the US electorate on the lie that MA is upset because the GOP opposed/obstructed, or had no involvement in, O’health care proposals. Even more hilarious considering the guy that won campaigned loud and clear on opposing the federal plan. Surely they can’t think we are this dumb out in TV land?
These little numbers of convenience were pulled from a poll reported by the Boston Herald yesterday. What is more revealing is looking at the text regarding those numbers… in total.
63 percent believe the country is seriously off track.
82 percent say Brown should work with Democrats to get GOP ideas into legislation.
70 percent call on Brown to work with Democrats to change the country’s health-care system.
28 percent want the senator-elect to stop health-care reform from even happening.
68 percent support the Bay State’s health-insurance plan over proposed national health-care reform.
47 percent feel government is doing too much that is better left to businesses and individuals.
In their unmitigated arrogance, the Obama WH is determined to close the eyes of the US citizen to two undisputable facts:
1: MA voters don’t want national health care. They want their own, and for the other States to take care of their own.
2: They, like the rest of the nation, support genuine reform that would result in the reduced costs of medical services to patients.
Number 1 above is undeniable, as stated in the poll results. The WH can spin numbers all they want with pointed omissions. The fact remains, MA does not want O’health care. Period.
Number 2 can be substantiated by fiscal reality. MA denizens are frustrated, watching their government run health care costs more than doubling the national average in increased premium costs, as revealed in a June 2009 Cato study.
* Although the state has reduced the number of residents without health insurance, 200,000 people remain uninsured. Moreover, the increase in the number of insured is primarily due to the state’s generous subsidies, not the celebrated individual mandate.
* Health care costs continue to rise much faster than the national average. Since 2006, total state health care spending has increased by 28 percent. Insurance premiums have increased by 8–10 percent per year, nearly double the national average.
* New regulations and bureaucracy are limiting consumer choice and adding to health care costs.
* Program costs have skyrocketed. Despite tax increases, the program faces huge deficits. The state is considering caps on insurance premiums, cuts in reimbursements to providers, and even the possibility of a “global budget” on health care spending—with its attendant rationing.
* A shortage of providers, combined with increased demand, is increasing waiting times to see a physician.
Needless to say, MA voters – like the rest of us – are ready and willing for cost reform. This is not to be misconstrued as support for a federal government take over of health care. There is ample bipartisan support amongst the electorate to demand such cost reform includes input from both sides of the aisle. The post-Brown election poll states this quite clearly.
All indicators on Sunday talking heads show that the Obama WH has no intention of using the “reset” button on his agenda. So why bother with the SOTU? Quite simply, it’s a captive national audience, ripe for re’spinning the same ‘ol, and putting a new twist on lies and leaps of assumption.
When it comes to the segment on job focus, Obama will be pulling out the unprovable – and already debunked – assertation that the less-than-stimulating stimulus “saved” about 2 million jobs, iced with the notion the economy would be far worse without Obama’s increase in the national debt by $1.693 trillion in a single year.
And we should believe this because the parallel universe events are broadcast where?
Since we can be assured of nothing new, all we can look forward to is another Obama campaign speech, with lots of Dems on their feet applauding, trying to rally the disgruntled base around heretofore losing propositions.
Aides say the speech also will feature promises that Obama wants to return to – changing Washington and restoring trust in it. That case looks much more difficult than when Obama was sworn in, as partisanship is as entrenched as ever, and backroom side deals remain a messy part of legislation.
What the speech won’t do is reshape Obama’s agenda. He ran on it and will defend it anew.
“I didn’t run to kick these challenges down the road,” Obama told an audience in Ohio on Friday, seeming to find a campaign voice that had not appeared in so many of his remarks this year. “I ran for president to confront them – once and for all.”
Those familiar with the address say it reflects Obama’s tendency toward consistency and his opposition to a laundry list of programs. “It’s not going to be a series of disjointed offerings, poll-tested offerings,” Axelrod said. “It’s going to be a narrative about where he wants to lead, and why, and for whom.”
Obama gave his speechwriters an outline of what he wanted, and has exchanged drafts. He was spending more time on it over the weekend, and will keep doing so until he steps before a struggling nation on Wednesday night.
Consistency? Absolutely. At least if you consider the arrogance of “change”, despite public DISapproval of that “change”.
My suggestion? Obama can save alot of our valuable time if – instead of repackaging a year of 634 appearances, speeches, comments, interviews in a new campaign speech – he just spends a few minutes referencing what he’s already parroted for the year. ala “…about the economy, please see my 200 speeches in Feb thru Dec in 2009…”
Better yet, how about a WH press release that lists the traditional subjects with hotlinks to his past multiple speeches. At least the nation couldl then get on with our normal, and probably far more entertaining, Wednesday night viewing.
Vietnam era Navy wife, indy/conservative, and an official California escapee now residing as a red speck in the sea of Oregon blue.