How did Obama ever think that his program would pass constitutional muster? How could he imagine that the Interstate Commerce clause could cover something that wasn't interstate (health insurance cannot be sold over state lines) and wasn't commerce (failure to buy insurance is not commerce) would stand up in court? He was so sure that he would win any constitutional challenge that he arrogantly failed to put a severability clause in the bill so that it would survive even if parts were stricken down.
All the public opinion polls now confirm that President Obama has moved up sharply and significantly in popularity and job approval since he began to tack toward the center after the November election. Rasmussen and Zogby both have him over 50% job approval for the first time in almost a year. The key event was his high-minded speech in the aftermath of the Tucson shootings and his clear separation from the blame-oriented liberal commentators who tried to pin the killings on the Tea Party and Sarah Palin.
For the past three years, the left and Obama have been indistinguishable, joined at the hip in a marriage of ideology and, where that failed, of convenience. Now the marriage is on the rocks and some see a divorce in the offing.
The pas-de-deux between the Republican House and the Democratic president and Senate can get old pretty quickly. The Republican House passes repeal of ObamaCare. The Senate either kills it or Obama vetoes it. The Republican House passes spending cuts. The Senate ... you get the drift.
With his up-to-the-second published polls, Scott Rasmussen has revolutionized the way politics is practiced in America. Now, in his new book, In Search of Self-Governance, he bids us all remember that the real political debate is not left vs. right, but rather between being governed by a bureaucracy and self-governance.
President Obama has won the Nobel Peace Prize, but nobody thinks he deserves the Nobel in economics. Despite $800 billion of economic stimulus and the accumulation of a $1.4 trillion deficit, he has been unable to lower the unemployment rate below 9.8%.
The most ominous signal yet for the Obama health care plan emerged in the poll by Scott Rasmussen released today. While public support for the plan fell to a new low (42% support, 53% oppose -- down five points in two weeks), the elderly emerged as the strongest opposition group.
Superficially, the United States appears to have a presidential system, but in fact it more and more resembles a parliamentary form of government.
In the polling hierarchy, the least signif icant data measure is a president's per sonal popularity. Here, President Obama excels, with most polls showing him in the high 60s. Next comes his job approval, significant but not necessarily predictive.
To quote the esteemed Rev. Jeremiah Wright, the chickens that were hatched in the stimulus package are coming home to roost in the healthcare proposal.