Tuesday, November 03, 2009

Election day 2009

My fellow Americans - get out today and Vote!1

If we're going to prevent a government takeover of the health care system, it's going to happen today. It's going to happen in NY-23, it's going to happen in NJ and it's going to happen in CA-10. It's going to happen in VA, too, but that one's really a foregone conclusion, and unless it's very close (bad) or very big (good), it won't mean much. In the language of Wall Street, a McDonnell victory over Deeds has already been "priced in."

How can the health-care takeover be prevented? After all, nothing that happens produces any effective change in the Congress. Obviously, the President will still be the President tomorrow, Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid will still be running things on Capitol Hill, and the margins aren't noticeably changed. So how can it affect the health-care debate?

Because this one thing is true about our elected officials - they are, at heart, essentially cowards. They are willing to risk any amount of (someone else's) money and any amount of societal stability on pet projects, social experiments and the like, but there's one thing that they won't risk - their seats. They like their seats, they like their offices and their staffs, and they love the feeling of power that they have, and the way that people convince them that they are important. They are extremely unwilling, as a group, to give up ANY of that.

Today, the people of Virginia, who helped to elect Barack Obama a year ago, are going to reject him. They're going to reject the stimulus, they're going to reject higher taxes, and they're going to reject the health care takeover. They're going to the voting booth and express their dissatisfaction with the sharp leftist tack that this administration has taken. If they are joined in this message by the people of New Jersey (by sending tax-and-spender Jon Corzine into retirement) and the people of CA-10 (the Democrat is going to win, but very possibly by a smaller amount than the district's registration discrepancy) and the people of NY-23 (who have already spoken by driving Dede Scozzafava out of the race), that's a message that WILL be heard by the representatives of the "red" and "purple" districts that Barack Obama and Nancy Pelosi need to pass this travesty. Those people want to keep their seats. If they're convinced by the conversion of tea parties and town hall meetings to actual voters that they can't both support Obamacare AND keep their seats, guess which one they're going to choose.

So it's a big day. And, as I said a couple of weeks ago, it's vital that this get done now if it's going to get done (which I hope and pray that it won't.)
While a year can be a long time in politics, there are enough members of Congress who are clearly "dead men walking" at this point that they know this is the chance, the only chance, to get this health care plan passed. If it doesn't go through this Congress, it isn't going to happen. A new session starts in January, and there's just no way on God's earth that something as unpopular as this plan looks to be happens during an election year. The stimulus has been an economic disaster, and, in retrospect, a public relations disaster. The "cash for clunkers" program isn't a laughing-stock in all areas and with all sections of the electorate, but it is with enough people that it's a net negative for the powers that be.

The Democrats may be able to keep the House of Representatives next November, but it's not a great bet, and they are almost assured of losing enough seats to make this kind of package impossible to pass again. The Democrats will almost certainly keep the Senate, but probably not with a filibuster-proof majority. Hence the desperation to get the Health Care System Takeover "Reform" Bill passed now.

So today is a big, big day. If you've got a vote today, use it.

1 - If you're voting Republican or independent, anyway. Democrats should go out and vote on Wednesday...


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