Fasten your seat belts.
Despite their hedging at Obama's Health Care "Summit," it appears Democrats are gearing up to go nuclear with ObamaCare; that is, pass the president's health care reform measure using the federal budget reconciliation process, which lowers the approval threshold from the constitutionally-required two-thirds majority to a simple majority of 51 percent. If "nuclear" sounds a little melodramatic, consider this: House Speaker Nancy Pelosi is urging fellow Democrats to pass the president's health care bill no matter what -- even if it costs them their jobs.
Which is easy for Pelosi to say, of course. Despite the loyal opposition she'll face from Republican businessman John Dennis in the 2010 midterm election, her seat is safe. It's easy to be fearless when you have nothing to lose.
For those wondering why health care is at the forefront of the president's agenda -- as opposed to jobs -- Pelosi had the answer on ABC's "This Week," which aired Sunday:
And by the way, the health care bill is a jobs bill. It will create four million new jobs, several hundred thousand immediately upon enactment. And it will also encourage an entrepreneurial spirit in our country where people can take risks and be entrepreneurial because they know they have health care.
But it's hard to take Pelosi's comments about the health care bill seriously (as it pertains to job creation). After all, she said the climate summit in Copenhagen was really about jobs, too. Just like the jobs summit on Dec. 1. After that summit, Pelosi said Democrats likely will be judged on whether they can deliver what she called, "jobs, jobs, jobs."
For those keeping score, it's fairly apparent that Copenhagen and the jobs summit have both struck out. January unemployment numbers rose 26 percent between 2009 and 2010, and the 3 percent dip in unemployment claims between December and January have been largely in spite of Democrats' efforts, not because of them.
I don't doubt for a minute that Pelosi and President Barack Obama genuinely believe they're acting in the best interests of the country. The problem, however, is that they also believe their health care reform bill will be a panacea to everything ailing the U.S. economy. Pelosi's aforementioned statement about how it will create jobs is proof. In her zeal to promote the health care reform measure, she forgot an important fact: the one job sector that has been least hurt by unemployment since the recession started is ... you guessed it ... health care.
Let's face it; health care reform has very little to do with job creation, and the Democrats know it. They're interested in moving forward with their agenda regardless of the other problems facing the country. Rather than admit their mistake and appear weak, Democrats have cast their lot with health care reform and will go wherever it takes them. Why they would choose to fall on their sword and extol the curative powers of their agenda instead of stabilizing the volatile U.S. economy and assuaging an angry public is a mystery to me.
But, then, I stopped trying to figure out liberals a long time ago.
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