Saturday, April 25, 2009

The One That Got Away

Perhaps one of the biggest bullets the GOP dodged in its efforts to successfully serve as the loyal opposition to the Obama Administration was for New Hampshire Sen. Judd Gregg, a Republican, to come to his senses and politely decline the President’s offer to become Commerce Secretary. Having originally accepted the position, Gregg dallied with the idea of joining Obama’s cabinet, before opting to remain in the Senate.

The change of heart severely hurt Obama’s ability to couch his move towards a Socialistic model of bigger, more centralized government as bipartisan. Having a respected Republican from a Blue State would have gone a long way in aiding the new administration in spinning such changes as bipartisan and centrist, thus stymieing the inevitable calls from the Red States and the right that the nation was on a course toward Socialism.

“…Mr. Gregg doesn't pull any punches in his criticism of the new president. He may be ‘a charismatic person’ with "a very strong understanding of who he is and what he wants to do," but when it comes to the substance of what Mr. Obama seeks to accomplish, Mr. Gregg is less charitable. ‘They have a goal,’ the senator says, ‘and he's very open about it. They are going to grow this government.’”
Such a statement can be construed as quite damning coming from a man who Obama ostensibly wanted to head up Commerce in his administration, and it get’s worse. Gregg alleges that for all the talk that the Democrats and the Obama Administration are not going to seek a “single payer” national health care initiative, such an anti-competitive plan is exactly what you would find if they’d let you look up both sleeves.
When it comes to health insurance, Mr. Gregg expects more of the same. "That's the scenario that you're going to see if you have a public plan for insurance that competes with the private plans. That's the game plan" -- call it competition at first, but tighten the screws until the private insurers leave the market or get forced out. But with health-care spending representing 17% of GDP and climbing, the stakes are much, much larger. "Everyone in this country is affected by these policies."
I highly recommend that you read WSJ’s article. It is one of our first chances to hear what may become a very important voice of opposition to socialized medicine and other rampant entitlement expansions over then next four years.

Important, because it is a voice Obama himself once hoped would be selling said expansion.

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