Wisdom Beat

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Political Wisdom: Finally, a Good, Personal Fight Over Health Care

By Gerald F. Seib

“Finally, Washington has what it loves in a good policy debate—which is a good personal feud within that policy debate. Carol E. Lee of Politico chronicles how President Barack ObamaMonday “accused Republicans of playing political games with health care reform,” but more specifically went after South Carolina Sen. Jim DeMint “for suggesting a defeat on health care could be a ‘Waterloo’ moment for Obama.” Obama’s retort, as Lee reports, was, “This isn’t about me. This isn’t about politics. This is about a health care system that is breaking America’s families, breaking America’s businesses, and breaking America’s economy.”  To stoke the fire a bit more, Lee notes, “White House Press Secretary Robert Gibbs defended Obama’s tactic of directly engaging DeMint and went a step further, calling out conservative columnist Bill Kristol as one of those Republicans who are peddling ‘a breathtaking message.’ Obama ‘could just have easily have quoted a Republican strategist today who said to go for the kill and asked opponents to resist the temptation to be responsible,’ Gibbs said, referring to Kristol’s Weekly Standard blog post that urges opponents of Obama’s reform plans to resist the temptation ‘to let up on their criticism, and to try to appear constructive, or at least responsible.’…The White House’s tactic of zeroing in on specific critics marks its more intense effort to thwart opposition to reform, while still appearing to spar above the fray by not directly naming names.””

Read the article.

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July 21, 2009 - Posted by | Wisdom Blog posts

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