The Fog of Controversy

March 10th, 2010

By Tom Carter

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi, on health care reform legislation:

We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it — away from the fog of the controversy.

Maybe the “fog” she’s talking about is caused by the fact that she and her colleagues have produced a bill over 2,000 pages long that some members of Congress haven’t even read.  Or maybe she just thinks the public is too stupid to see through the “fog.”

Truth is, most people oppose the legislation precisely because it’s shrouded in political deception and misdirection.  She ain’t seen nothin’ yet — wait until the bill is passed and signed into law, and then she’ll see real controversy.

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5 Responses to “The Fog of Controversy”

  1. Brianna |

    “We have to pass the bill so that you can find out what is in it ”

    Call me crazy, but shouldn’t you typically find out what is in a bill before you pass it?

  2. Tom |

    Interesting column in The Washington Post by Michael Gerson. It begins:

    Whatever the legislative fate of health reform — now in the hands of a few besieged House Democrats — the reformers have failed in their argument. Their proposal has divided Democrats while uniting Republicans, returned American politics to well-worn ideological ruts, employed legislative tactics that smack of corruption, squandered the president’s public standing, lowered public regard for Congress to French revolutionary levels, sucked the oxygen from other agenda items, reengaged the abortion battle, produced freaks and prodigies of nature such as a Republican senator from Massachusetts, raised questions about the continued governability of America and caused the White House chief of staff to distance himself from the president’s ambitions.

    It is quite an accomplishment. For the president, it must also be quite a shock, because he thought he was taking a reasonable, middle path on health reform.

  3. larry |

    What did you expect?
    Nancy, Harry and Barak are on an Ego trip. Voter approval be damned. They are defying the will of the people with little if any remorse.
    The sad part is that many Americans still embrace the notion it can’t happen here.

  4. Lisa |

    “For the president, it must also be a shock…” I do not agree with Michael Gerson in this sentence. I do not think Obama is in shock because he is either so in over his head to see the forest through the trees, or so wrapped up in his ideology which he shares with Reid and Pelosi, he doesn’t care about the shocking situation Gerson describes. I am leaning toward ideology as the reason because surely there is someone associated with the White House who sees the train wreck in progress but their views are not heard just as the American people’s are not heard.

  5. Tom |

    Lisa, I tend to go with the explanation that Obama is in over his head. He’s very intelligent, well-educated, speaks well, and all that, but he seems to be proving that being president is a bit too much for him. We see that in the way he has dealt with Congress, his failure to provide firm leadership on his major policy agenda, and his inability to effectively get the country behind him.

    If he had done a better job of firmly leading his party in Congress and had worked with the minority just a little (as he promised he would), the health care bill, for better or worse, would have been passed and signed into law last year.

    There’s no doubt that Obama is a liberal and shares the views of the majority in Congress. But he’s more flexible than they are, it seems, and more willing to accept less than everything he wants in order to get most of what he wants.

    The current speculation among press and pundits about the role of Rahm Emanuel in the White House goes directly to what you said — he’s the one, among all of them, who ought to see this “train wreck in progress” and be doing something about it. I’m sure Emanuel is directly or indirectly encouraging this speculation because he doesn’t want to be seen as the engineer responsible for the train wreck.

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