Posts Tagged ‘110 minutes’

Democrats With TWICE The Time Still Managed To Lose Health Care Summit

February 26, 2010

The breakdown as to the time spent talking at the health care summit:

Democrats: 114 minutes
Republicans: 110 minutes
Barack Obama (uber Democrat): 119 minutes

Which means that for every one minute Republicans were allowed to speak, Democrats allowed themselves more than 2 minutes to speak.

How bipartisan of them.

Obama by himself spent nine more minutes talking than he allowed the 17 Republicans combined to have:

“President Obama pledged to “listen” at the outset of his much-ballyhooed bipartisan health care summit on Thursday. Turns out he meant he’d be listening to his own voice.”

Obama acknowledged the massive disparity and the massive unfairness of the meeting this way:

“You’re right, there was an imbalance on the opening statements because – I’m the president.” Half the room laughed. “I didn’t count my time in terms of dividing it evenly.”

But that’s not the whole story.  Oh, no.  Obama not only gave himself more time to talk than all the Republicans combined, but he also gave himself more time to talk than all the other Democrats combined.

And Obama spent most of his time attacking the points made by Republicans, who were rarely ever allowed to respond and defend themselves as Obama dictated the event.

Throughout the event, Obama – ever the ideological moderator – remarked while Republicans were getting one of their rare chances to speak that they were behind the time schedule.  At one point while Republican Senator Dr. Tom Coburn was speaking Harry Reid said, “Mr. President, if I could just say, I’m not an expert on much but I am filibusters and we’ve got 40 members of Congress here.”  But the problem CLEARLY wasn’t Dr. Coburn and it clearly wasn’t the Republicans.  Rather, the problem was Obama and his “Help! I’m talking and I can’t shut up!” problem.

Still, as unfair and partisan as it was, it was still the closest by far and away that Democrats have been “bipartisan.”

The Democrats took unfair partisan advantage and cheated.  But the Republicans still kicked their asses today.

From Don Surber’s Daily Mail:

Rave reviews for Republicans

Their sampling of quotes:

CNN’s WOLF BLITZER: “It looks like the Republicans certainly showed up ready to play.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

CNN’s GLORIA BORGER: “The Republicans have been very effective today. They really did come to play. They were very smart.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

BORGER: “They took on the substance of a very complex issue. … But they really stuck to the substance of this issue and tried to get to the heart of it and I think did a very good job.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

BORGER: “They came in with a plan. They mapped it out.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

CNN’s DAVID GERGEN: “The folks in the White House just must be kicking themselves right now. They thought that coming out of Baltimore when the President went in and was mesmerizing and commanding in front of the House Republicans that he could do that again here today. That would revive health care and would change the public opinion about their health care bill and they can go on to victory. Just the opposite has happened.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

GERGEN: “He doesn’t have a strong Democratic team behind him.” (CNN’s “Live,” 2/25/10)

THE HILL’S A.B. STODDARD: “I think we need to start out by acknowledging Republicans brought their ‘A Team.’ They had doctors knowledgeable about the system, they brought substance to the table, and they, I thought, expressed interest in the reform. I thought in the lecture from Senator John McCain and on the issue of transparency, I thought today the Democrats were pretty much on their knees.” (Fox News’ “Live,” 2/25/10)

THE WEEKLY STANDARD’S STEVE HAYES: “I think to me the most important thing to come out of the morning so far is that Republicans have spent a great deal of time talking with great passion, and I think eagerness about their plans, detailing the plans that until this morning them Democrats had been saying didn’t exist. Well, you now see, I think, in great detail that Republicans do have plans, that they care about the same issues and that they feel passionately about it.” (Fox News’ “Live,” 2/25/10)

My take is this is health insurance is a boring topic that has shown just how boring and dull this president is. He is hopelessly lost in the Land of Actuarial Tables, where co-payments and deductibles reign.

I’m beginning to see why he keeps flogging this dead horse: He has nothing closer to a unicorn than this; it is all he knows.

There’s a lot more than that.  TPM provides another slew of liberals who basically give the Republicans the win including this one:

“I think it was a draw, which was a Republican win,” said Democratic political consultant Dan Gerstein. “The Republican tone was just right: a respectful, substantive disagreement, very disciplined and consistent in their message.”

If Democratic strategist Dan Gerstein says it was a draw, it was a Republican ass-kicking.

There were several moments that were illustrative of the sham of Obama’s faux-bipartisan summit (e.g., Obama’s personal attack against John McCain by telling him, “We’re not campaigning any more.  The election’s over” – which was a personally harsh and incredibly hypocritical charge given the fact that even Democrats acknowledge that Obama has done little BUT constantly campaign); but one moment stood out to me as summing up Obama’s strategy to forcibly twist the Republicans to either bow to his agenda or demonize them as “obstructionists”:

THE PRESIDENT: “Dave, I don’t mean to interrupt. But the — we’re going to have the whole section talking about deficits. And we can talk about the changes in Medicare. We were trying to focus on costs related to lowering families’. And the only concern I’ve got is — look, if every speaker at least on one side is going through every provision and saying what they don’t like, it’s going to be hard for us to see if we can arrive at some agreements on things that we all agree on.”

Let’s recap: The Republicans had asked/begged/demanded that Obama take the current 2,700 page Democrat bill off the table.  Obama refused.  And then Obama offered his own even worse and more expensive version of that 2,700 page Senate Democrat bill.

Obama and the Democrats used the word “agree” so many times that it was simply unreal.  Clearly, the idea was to represent the Republicans as being in substantial agreement with the Democrats’ bill, and then demand why they weren’t supporting a bill which they basically agreed with.

Only the Republicans DIDN’T agree with the Democrats’ 2,700 page monstrosity.  And they wanted to explain why.

This was unacceptable to Obama.  He wanted to make the Republicans appear to agree with him, so he could later demonize them as the obstructionist party of no.

If Obama had really wanted to seek agreement with the Republicans, he would have withdrawn the 2,700 page howitzer he was aiming at them.  And he would have taken off the table a second howitzer of using reconciliation (aka “the nuclear option”) to fundamentally change the Senate rules to shove that 2,700 page howitzer down the Republicans’ throats.

But he refused to do that.  He refused to allow the Republicans to talk about what they could agree on, and instead forced them to confront the 2,700 page ObamaCare boondoggle which they – and the overwhelming majority of the American people – had already completely rejected.

This was never about Obama seeking agreement from Republicans; this was all about attempting to use a “bipartisan summit” to make them look bad so he could demagogue them.

Only – too bad, so sad for Barry Hussein – the Republicans didn’t look bad.  In fact, they looked pretty dang good.

Judging from the polling, Americans overwhelmingly came away from the summit believing that it was nothing more than political theater.  Which was exactly what it was.

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