Poor, Poor Harry Reid

It hasn’t been a great year for Harry Reid by any stretch of the imagination. Americans have been nauseated by the liberal agenda Reid, Pelosi, and Obama have pushed. That’s a big problem for Reid because he’s up for reelection next year and his approval rating in Nevada is at a pathetic 38%. Moreover, his numbers aren’t improving despite the fact that he’s already spending significant sums on advertising. Meanwhile, both of Reid’s likely opponents, Danny Tarkanian and Sue Lowden, are both beating him handily despite not being able to match his name recognition yet.

So now Reid’s pushing a trainwreck of a health care bill that will explode the deficit, damage Medicare, increase premiums, raise taxes, lead to rationing, and destroy the quality of health care in America. The American public is clearly, unambiguously against the bill, and the numbers only seem to be getting worse for the Democrats.

The latest Rasmussen numbers are horrific:

Generally speaking, do you strongly favor, somewhat favor, somewhat oppose or strongly oppose the health care reform plan proposed by President Obama and the congressional Democrats?
41% Strongly/Somewhat Favor, 51% Strongly/Somewhat Oppose (chart)

If the health care reform plan passes, will the quality of health care get better, worse, or stay about the same?
23% Better, 54% Worse, 16% Same

If the health care reform plan passes, will the cost of health care go up, go down, or stay about the same?
57% Up, 21% Down, 17% Same

So now, Harry Reid is in a pickle. The House has passed health care reform, but he needs to get every single Democrat in the Senate on board to pass it without having to gut the bill via reconciliation. That’s turning out to be a difficult proposition and there are no easy answers.

The American public despises the bill and if it passes, it’ll hurt Reid’s chances to get elected. On the other hand, if it doesn’t pass, liberals may treat Reid like a scapegoat. Meanwhile, the longer this drags on, the more it hurts the bill.

Of course, common sense might say that if a takeover of 1/6 of the US economy is already unpopular and getting less popular by the day, maybe the Senate should think twice about whether it’s a good idea. But that might require some actual common sense, leadership, and a willingness to consider that maybe DC isn’t the source of all wisdom. Instead, we get this from Harry Reid:

Reid The Nevada Democrat, in a sweeping set of accusations on the Senate floor, also compared health care foes to those who opposed women’s suffrage and the civil rights movement — even though it was Sen. Strom Thurmond, then a Democrat, who unsuccessfully tried to filibuster the Civil Rights Act of 1957 and it was Republicans who led the charge against slavery.

Senate Republicans on Monday called Reid’s comments “offensive” and “unbelievable.”

But Reid argued that Republicans are using the same stalling tactics employed in the pre-Civil War era.

“Instead of joining us on the right side of history, all the Republicans can come up with is, ‘slow down, stop everything, let’s start over.’ If you think you’ve heard these same excuses before, you’re right,” Reid said Monday. “When this country belatedly recognized the wrongs of slavery, there were those who dug in their heels and said ‘slow down, it’s too early, things aren’t bad enough.'”

He continued: “When women spoke up for the right to speak up, they wanted to vote, some insisted they simply, slow down, there will be a better day to do that, today isn’t quite right.

“When this body was on the verge of guaranteeing equal civil rights to everyone regardless of the color of their skin, some senators resorted to the same filibuster threats that we hear today.”

That seemed to be a reference to Thurmond’s famous 1957 filibuster — the late senator switched parties several years later.

Many people have noted that it was Republicans who opposed slavery and Democrats who supported it. Also, it was Democrats, not Republicans who were prone to filibustering civil rights bills. Republicans have a long, proud history of supporting civil rights for minorities that continues to this day. Democrats can’t say the same. I’d also add that the Republican Party, not the Democrats, was the first to push for women’s suffrage. The GOP’s party platform had a reference to women’s suffrage way back in 1872.

All that aside, Harry Reid’s outburst stinks of desperation — it was also extremely foolish. He’s just once again emphasizing to the public that it’s the Republicans who oppose this unpopular health care bill. He also, by insulting Republicans, insulted the majority of the American public. After all, if opposing Obamacare is like supporting slavery and most Americans oppose Obamacare, then Harry Reid’s attack also applies to a heck of a lot of Americans, including a good number of independents and moderate Democrats. Before Harry Reid and the Democrats start trashing the American public by proxy, they should think twice.

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