America was presented with the political truth on Tuesday night in a way it has needed for many months. Bill Clinton took the stage, and then he commandeered it. There is no elder statesman alive today that can match the power of Clinton when he is in campaign mode.
For too long the Republicans have refused to work in any reasonable way in Washington, with their only intent to deny President Obama any policy achievement, or the American public a government that can do the nation’s business.
The GOP needed to be called out for their tactics, and lies.
People ask me all the time how we delivered four surplus budgets. What new ideas did we bring? I always give a one-word answer: arithmetic.
In Tampa, the Republican argument against the President’s re-election was pretty simple: we left him a total mess, he hasn’t cleaned it up fast enough, so fire him and put us back in.
In order to look like an acceptable alternative to President Obama, they couldn’t say much about the ideas they have offered over the last two years. You see they want to go back to the same old policies that got us into trouble in the first place: to cut taxes for high income Americans even more than President Bush did; to get rid of those pesky financial regulations designed to prevent another crash and prohibit future bailouts; to increase defense spending two trillion dollars more than the Pentagon has requested without saying what they’ll spend the money on; to make enormous cuts in the rest of the budget, especially programs that help the middle class and poor kids. As another President once said – there they go again.
The Republicans call it Obamacare and say it’s a government takeover of health care that they’ll repeal. Are they right? Let’s look at what’s happened so far. Individuals and businesses have secured more than a billion dollars in refunds from their insurance premiums because the new law requires 80% to 85% of your premiums to be spent on health care, not profits or promotion. Other insurance companies have lowered their rates to meet the requirement. More than 3 million young people between 19 and 25 are insured for the first time because their parents can now carry them on family policies. Millions of seniors are receiving preventive care including breast cancer screenings and tests for heart problems. Soon the insurance companies, not the government, will have millions of new customers many of them middle class people with pre-existing conditions. And for the last two years, health care spending has grown under 4%, for the first time in 50 years.
So are we all better off because President Obama fought for it and passed it? You bet we are!
It just was a joy watching Clinton perform and articulate a message.
Day two of the convention has again presented a well themed, and highly polished series of speakers.
A poll bounce for President Obama is a-coming.