Daily Archives: Sept. 30, 2010

Bad idea to blame voters

votingPresident Obama told Rolling Stone that “people need to shake off this lethargy” and “buck up.” Vice President Joe Biden suggested disappointed Democrats “stop whining.” There is some truth in such comments, in that Democrats aren’t showing much gratitude for all the administration has delivered. But New York Post columnist John Podhoretz was reminded of when frustrated Republican presidential nominee Bob Dole similarly told a late-October 1996 campaign crowd: “I wonder sometimes what people are thinking about, or if people are thinking at all. Wake up, America!” (The former Kansas senator lost badly to President Clinton a few days later.) Podhoretz noted: “Obama is talking to voters as though he is their boss, or their principal, or their father. He is not any of those things. He is their employee. And employers don’t like it when their employees yell at them.” The Wall Street Journal editorial board hears something else in Democrats’ “blame-the-voters” approach, saying Democrats “are beginning to sound like the late comedian Chris Farley’s portrayal of a ‘motivational speaker’ on ‘Saturday Night Live.’ Farley’s character sought to inspire young people by announcing that they wouldn’t amount to ‘jack squat’ and would someday be ‘living in a van down by the river.’”

Kansas’ GOP split no more?

elephantlove“Those Democrats who do win in Kansas tend to be sure-footed enough to find the (sometimes mushy) middle ground, while quietly relying on the GOP to split into warring factions — religious conservatives vs. libertarian free enterprisers. But Republican Kevin Yoder seems determined not to let a civil war break out this time.” — Time magazine “Races to Watch” story on Kansas’ 3rd Congressional District and Stephene Moore’s uphill bid to succeed her husband, Rep. Dennis Moore, D-Lenexa

Open thread 9/30

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Sebelius vs. Wall Street Journal continues

healthcaregovThe Wall Street Journal editorial board’s war of words with Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius continues to escalate. A Wednesday editorial challenged the former Kansas governor’s account of how Blue Cross Blue Shield of North Carolina decided to refund $155.8 million to policy holders to offset premium increases, saying that “if Ms. Sebelius is going to speak purported truth to power, she’s going to need more respect for the facts.” The editorial concluded: “Obamacare is laying waste to many reputations, and Ms. Sebelius won’t enhance hers by turning HHS into the Department of Disinformation.”