Rich Lowry of National Review writes for the Politico website that Democrats who pushed Obamacare through Congress without any Republican support are now hoping Republicans will help the Dems shoulder some of the blame for the flawed program.
It’s a little late to get or expect any Republican buy-in, though. That would have required serious compromise back in 2009, when Democrats, at the high tide of their power in the Obama era, saw no reason to make any. They ignored the polls, they ignored Scott Brown’s shocking win in Massachusetts, and they ignored normal parliamentary practices to pass the single most partisan piece of major social legislation in a century.
They insisted on this particular law, at this particular time. They own it. They own every canceled policy, every rate increase, every unintended consequence and every unpopular intended consequence. It is theirs, lock, stock and two smoking barrels.
But they can’t stop whining.
They complain that Republicans aren’t as cooperative as they were when the Medicare Part D prescription drug plan had a rocky start. This is absurd. The Part D website experienced what could be accurately described as “glitches,” rather than the full meltdown of HealthCare.gov. And Democrats supported the basic idea of the prescription drug benefit, even if they wanted a more generous one. …
… In a characteristically graceless note, in his health care speech in Boston Wednesday President Obama didn’t say anything about how his prior declarations had been misleading, at best. Instead, he tweaked his dishonesty for a different positive spin: “For the fewer than 5 percent of Americans who buy insurance on your own, you will be getting a better deal.” Not if they are forced — as many of them will be — to buy benefits they don’t need at a price they don’t want to pay.
From the beginning, Obamacare has depended on a political ethic of doing and saying whatever is necessary. The falsehood about people keeping their coverage was essential to selling the legislation. So the president repeated it relentlessly. Now that actually allowing people keep their current coverage would undermine a pillar of the law, the president will resist all efforts to make good on his famous promise. Whatever it takes.