Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Punch Them In The Mouth With Their Polling Argument

The Republicans made up some of the most vicious and vile lies about health care reform over the course of the last year and because the media was unwilling to call them out for these lies, several of them actually took hold with a segment of the population. Even when they were disproven over and over again, shameless Republicans continued to repeat them over and over again and the resulting confusion worked out in their favor...for awhile. The polling numbers for President Obama and the health care reform plans definitely went underwater for a time, even if the poll numbers for the underlying policies remained relatively strong. But Republicans made what could quite possibly be a cataclysmic error when they started using the polling as an argument to vote against health care reform. It was without a doubt an act of desperation as they saw the writing on the wall that health care reform would pass, but even in desperation you would think SOMEBODY would have pointed out how this might come back to bite them in the ass.

Thank God, nobody evidently did.

There was always both a potential short term and a potential long term problem for Republicans with using the polling argument. The short term problem of course would have been if all of the polling turned around before the health care votes were taken. It would be really hard to on the one hand say that Democrats are going to vote against the wishes of the American people when polling is bad, then turn around and vote against the polling numbers when they turn around for health care reform. The hypocrisy would have been so over the top that I think had that happened a few Republicans would have pealed off and voted for the bill in shame. But even though polling did turn around in several polls on health care reform, by and large it was still a mixed bag so the Republicans effectively got away with it in the short term.

But the long term problem was always going to be the harder one to over come anyway. See its easy to fearmonger against something when its still just a concept, but its a lot harder to fearmonger effectively against it when it becomes a reality. The only way the Republicans strategy would work would be if they could somehow keep the polling numbers for health care reform mixed. This as seniors are getting rebates of $250 to help them with their prescription drugs. This as people's kids aren't being discriminated against for preexisting conditions. This as parents are allowed to keep their kids on their insurance until age 26.

Not exactly the easiset task.

But not only would they have to hope that people would continue to be either confused about or against health care reform, they would actually need for people to be SOOOOO against it that they would support a full repeal of it. Let me repeat that, a FULL repeal of health care reform, something that Presidents, Democrat and Republican alike, have been trying to get passed for over half a century.

So now, on the day that health care reform is signed into law, here comes the first of many devastating blows to come in my opinion for the Republican Party.

WASHINGTON — Americans by 9 percentage points have a favorable view of the health care overhaul that President Obama signed into law Tuesday, a USA TODAY/Gallup Poll finds, a notable turnaround from surveys before the vote that showed a plurality against it.
By 49%-40% those surveyed say it was "a good thing" rather than a bad one that Congress passed the bill. Half describe their reaction in positive terms, as "enthusiastic" or "pleased," while about four in 10 describe it in negative ways, as "disappointed" or "angry."

The largest single group, 48%, calls the bill "a good first step" that should be followed by more action on health care. An additional 4% also have a favorable view, saying the bill makes the most important changes needed in the nation's health care system.

Understand this, these numbers are coming out before even a single provision of the health care bill has actually taken effect. Nobody has even begun to feel the positive aspects of it and yet the numbers are 49% for and 40% against. If you don't think those numbers will improve after the bill actually starts taking effect in people's day to day lives you're delusional....or maybe just a hardcore Republican.

But wait it gets worse as Greg Sargent tracked down the internals.

* Independents say passage was a good thing, though by a statistically insignificant margin: 46-45.

* The emotional response of respondendents was more positive than negative, with 50% saying they’re enthusiastic or pleased while 42% are angry or disappointed. But: Indys break down along these lines 45-47.

* Republicans are very unhappy about what happened: A whopping 79% are angry or disappointed.

* Gallup concludes that passage was a “clear political victory,” but adds that much will turn on which way independents swing in coming weeks.

So even independents, who were pretty down on the bill in most polls, are now at least even in those for and those against. And many of them are evidently not just ok with the bill but enthusiastic or pleased. You KNOW the Republicans are going to rush out some Rasmussen poll to combat these numbers publicly but privately they have to be wetting their pants.

Either way the attack ads will damn near write themselves.

Imagine about 20 seconds of clips of Republicans referring to polling over the last few months and how Democrats were voting against their constituents.

Then a still shot of this poll.

Then a voice over guy saying “Well surely Republicans will support reform now, right?”

Then show images of tea baggers and Republicans cow towing to them. Steele calling reform armageddon. Several Repugs talking about repeal. Attorney Generals calling it unconstitutional. Basically a bunch of angry rhetoric.

Then cut to a kid who now has coverage even though they have a preexisting condition, cut to an elderly person at the pharmacy picking up their meds, cut to a small business owner handing out insurance card to their employees.

“For Republicans is it really about you? Or is it really about them?” fade to black with audio of wingnuts screaming "Kill the bill" in the background.

That's my 2 minute thought process ad. Imagine what I could do with this wealth of material if I actually sat down and thought about it.

I'll say this much, I hope Florida US Senate candidate Kendrick Meek's people ask both Marco Rubio and Charlie Crist early and often if they support repeal and or the efforts by the Florida AG to call health care reform unconstitutional. I don't know if Crist will make it out off the primary but if he does we all know he will flip flop with the polling numbers. But if Rubio makes it out he is such an idiot that he will not only continue to call for repeal but scare most Floridians in the process.

Either way, we win. So whose coming with me?

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