Obama losing some support among nervous Dems
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  1. #1
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    Exclamation Obama losing some support among nervous Dems

    Obama losing some support among nervous Dems
    By BETH FOUHY (AP) – 1 day ago
    The Associated Press: Obama losing some support among nervous Dems
    NEW YORK — Could it be that President Barack Obama's Midas touch is starting to dull a bit, even among members of his own party?

    Conservative House Democrats are balking at the cost and direction of Obama's top priority, an overhaul of the nation's health care system. A key Senate Democrat, Max Baucus of Montana, complains that Obama's opposition to paying for it with a tax on health benefits "is not helping us."

    Another Democrat, Rep. Dan Boren of Oklahoma, tells his local newspaper that Obama is too liberal and is "very unpopular" in his district.

    From his first days in office, Obama's popularity helped him pass the landmark $787 billion stimulus package and fueled his ambitious plans to overhaul the nation's health care system and tackle global warming.

    Obama continues to be comparatively popular. But now recent national surveys have shown a measurable drop in his job approval rating, even among Democrats. A CBS news survey out this week had his national approval rating at 57 percent, and his standing among Democrats down 10 percentage points since last month, from 92 percent to 82 percent.

    With the economy continuing to sputter and joblessness on the rise, many of Obama's staunchest Democratic supporters are anxious for his agenda to start bearing fruit.

    "We are eager and impatient, so you're seeing a little bit of that," said Chris Redfern, chairman of the Ohio Democratic Party. "Elections have results, and those in the base are the most anxious to achieve what's promised in the election. That's why Democrats are showing some impatience in reaching our goal."

    Obama won Ohio, a key swing state, by 4 percentage points in 2008 over Republican John McCain. But the one-time industrial powerhouse has been hit hard by the weak economy, and a Quinnipiac University poll released this month showed Obama with a lackluster approval rating of 49 percent.

    Redfern argued that the stimulus program has begun to show tangible results in his state and people shouldn't expect the economy to turn around instantly.

    A similar argument came from Nevada, another swing state Obama carried. Las Vegas City Councilman Steve Ross counseled patience, saying that voters in his state want Obama to succeed and that their support would be solidified once they saw stimulus-driven building projects under way.

    "Generally, folks in Nevada are waiting to see the effects of the stimulus package," Ross said. "I think the president is probably just as impatient to get this money out in the country to employ people as anyone."

    In Missouri, which Obama narrowly lost to McCain, Democratic strategist Steve Glorioso said hardcore base voters were as enthusiastic as ever for Obama but that there was a sense of disappointment about him among less committed Democrats and independents.

    "People are scared," Glorioso said. "This is the worst economic time anyone under the age of 80 has ever experienced, and you can't discount people being afraid. Now that we are in July, the fear is turning to disappointment that the president hasn't fixed everything yet. I don't know why they thought he could change everything by now, but some did."

    Glorioso said an open Senate race next year in Missouri, where Democrat Robin Carnahan is likely to face former Republican Rep. Roy Blunt, will be a crucial test of Obama's appeal.

    "If the economy gets better and they pass a reasonable health care bill, his popularity will be way back up and Carnahan will win," Glorioso said. "If none of that happens, it's a moot point."

    In Michigan, where the near-collapse of the auto industry has driven the unemployment rate to 14.1 percent, the nation's worst, the state's Democratic chairman, Mark Brewer, said support for Obama among Democrats has remained strong.

    "People are very worried and concerned, I don't want to dispute that," Brewer said. "But they voted for the president in overwhelming numbers and want to support the things he's trying to do."

    Obama traveled to Michigan this week to unveil a $12 billion program to help community colleges prepare people for jobs. There, he made an audacious declaration.

    "I love these folks who helped get us in this mess and then suddenly say, 'Well, this is Obama's economy,'" the president said. "That's fine. Give it to me!"

    Redfern, the Ohio Democratic Party chairman, said he welcomed that statement but cautioned it came with a price.

    "When it's the president's economy, it's the president's trouble," Redfern said. "Americans are eager for the change that they voted into office. They support him, they just want to see results sooner rather than later."

    Copyright © 2009 The Associated Press. All rights reserved.
    FESTUS
    IN OMNIA PARATUS

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  3. #2
    Like rats fleeing a sinking ship.
    By faith Noah,being warned of God of things not seen as yet, moved with fear,prepared an ark to the saving of his house;by the which he condemned the world,and became heir of the righteousness which is by faith Heb.11:7

  4. #3
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    It's about time the rose colored glasses came off
    "You can get a lot accomplished if you don't care who gets the credit" - Ronald Reagan

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    Budget delayed to help push Health Care

    By TOM RAUM
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    Obama Economy Uncovered - What Team Obama isn’t telling you about the economy.

    WASHINGTON (AP) - The White House is being forced to acknowledge the wide gap between its once-upbeat predictions about the economy and today's bleak landscape.

    The administration's annual midsummer budget update is sure to show higher deficits and unemployment and slower growth than projected in President Barack Obama's budget in February and update in May, and that could complicate his efforts to get his signature health care and global-warming proposals through Congress.

    The release of the update - usually scheduled for mid-July - has been put off until the middle of next month, giving rise to speculation the White House is delaying the bad news at least until Congress leaves town on its August 7 summer recess.

    The administration is pressing for votes before then on its $1 trillion health care initiative, which lawmakers are arguing over how to finance.

    The White House budget director, Peter Orszag, said on Sunday that the administration believes the "chances are high" of getting a health care bill by then. But new analyses showing runaway costs are jeopardizing Senate passage.

    "Instead of a dream, this routine report could be a nightmare," Tony Fratto, a former Treasury Department official and White House spokesman under President George W. Bush, said of the delayed budget update. "There are some things that can't be escaped."

    The administration earlier this year predicted that unemployment would peak at about 9 percent without a big stimulus package and 8 percent with one. Congress did pass a $787 billion two-year stimulus measure, yet unemployment soared to 9.5 percent in June and appears headed for double digits.

    Obama's current forecast anticipates 3.2 percent growth next year, then 4 percent or higher growth from 2011 to 2013. Private forecasts are less optimistic, especially for next year.

    Any downward revision in growth or revenue projections would mean that budget deficits would be far higher than the administration is now suggesting.

    Setting the stage for bleaker projections, Vice President Joe Biden recently conceded, "We misread how bad the economy was" in January. Obama modified that by suggesting the White House had "incomplete" information.

    The new budget update comes as the public and members of Congress are becoming increasingly anxious over Obama's economic policies.

    A Washington Post-ABC News survey released Monday shows approval of Obama's handling of health-care reform slipping below 50 percent for the first time. The poll also found support eroding on how Obama is dealing with other issues that are important to Americans right now - the economy, unemployment and the swelling budget deficit.

    The Democratic-controlled Congress is reeling from last week's testimony by the head of the nonpartisan Congressional Budget Office, Douglas Elmendorf, that the main health care proposals Congress is considering would not reduce costs - as Obama has insisted - but "significantly expand" the federal financial responsibility for health care.

    That gave ammunition to Republican critics of the bill.

    Late last week, Obama vowed anew that "health insurance reform cannot add to our deficit over the next decade and I mean it."

    The nation's debt - the total of accumulated annual budget deficits - now stands at $11.6 trillion. In the scheme of things, that's more important than talking about the "deficit," which only looks at a one-year slice of bookkeeping and totally ignores previous indebtedness that is still outstanding.

    Even so, the administration has projected that the annual deficit for the current budget year will hit $1.84 trillion, four times the size of last year's deficit of $455 billion. Private forecasters suggest that shortfall may actually top $2 trillion.

    The administration has projected that the annual deficit for the current budget year will hit $1.84 trillion, four times the size of last year's deficit of $455 billion. Private forecasters suggest that shortfall may top $2 trillion.

    If a higher deficit and lower growth numbers are not part of the administration's budget update, that will lead to charges that the White House is manipulating its figures to offer too rosy an outlook - the same criticism leveled at previous administrations.

    The midsession review by the White House's Office of Management and Budget will likely reflect weaker numbers. But where is it?

    White House officials say it is now expected in mid-August. They blame the delay on the fact that this is a transition year between presidencies and note that Obama didn't release his full budget until early May - instead of the first week in February, when he put out just an outline.

    Still, the update mainly involves plugging in changes in economic indicators, not revising program-by-program details. And indicators such as unemployment and gross domestic product changes have been public knowledge for some time.

    Standard & Poor's chief economist David Wyss said part of the problem with the administration's earlier numbers is that "they were just stale," essentially put together by budget number-crunchers at the end of last year, before the sharp drop in the economy.

    Wyss, like many other economists, says he expects the recession to last at least until September or October. "We're looking for basically a zero second half (of 2009). And then sluggish recovery," he said.

    Orszag, making the rounds of Sunday talk shows, insisted the economy at the end of last year, which the White House used for its optimistic budget forecasts, "was weaker at that time than anyone anticipated." He cited a "sense of free fall" not fully recognized at the time.

    "It's going to take time to work our way out of it," the White House budget director told "Fox News Sunday."

    Even as it prepares to put larger deficit and smaller growth figures into its official forecast, the administration is looking for signs of improvement.

    "If we were at the brink of catastrophe at the beginning of the year, we have walked some substantial distance back from the abyss," said Lawrence Summers, Obama's chief economic adviser.

  6. #5
    If the argument is the stimulus funds won't start flowing into the economy until the Fall, this could either go very well or very bad for the Obamamonkey. If the economy is still flat but taxes are higher, Dems will lose seats, if the economy recovers and the tax hikes are veiled by profits, Repubs will be lucky to hold ground.

  7. #6
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    I received this email from Congressman Tom Price

    Fellow Concerned American,

    In the Hippocratic Oath I took to become a physician, the phrase "... I will keep [my patients] from harm and injustice..." remains dear to me; not only as a Physician, but now as a Member of Congress.

    I have devoted my life to keeping my patients healthy and safe, and now I apply those same principles to my constituents in Georgia's 6th District. With that said, the Democrats' current plan in the U.S. House is detrimental to America's well being.

    Even the President wouldn't get on board with his own plan. According to ABC News "Health Care Forum", a doctor in the audience asked the President if he would pledge not to seek extraordinary help if his wife or kids became sick and their treatment and tests fell outside of the Public Plan offered. He refused to make such a pledge...

    Under Government-Run HealthCare, Democrats would place Washington in between you and your physician. And by the sound of it, the President doesn't even trust his own party to make such decisions on behalf of his family; so why should you?

    As you heard last week from Leader Boehner, the Democratic plan is led by interest groups rather than physicians, and we must not stand for this!

    Our Republican Alternative places an emphasis on two issues:

    First -- we agree that we must make healthcare coverage affordable for all Americans. We are working hard to create a level of coverage that makes financial sense for all Americans to be insured without government intrusion or mandates. And we plan on doing this through fundamental reform of the tax code.

    Second -- that coverage should be owned and controlled by those most affected by the system - patients! By placing the power in the hands of patients and their doctors, not federal bureaucrats, we will enjoy the innovation, responsiveness, accountability, and flexibility that would surely go unseen in the Democratic Plan.

    Won't you please join me in educating the public about how dangerous the passage of this plan really would be? Please take the time to call your Congressman and encourage him or her to vote 'NO' on the Democrat plan and not rush into another trillion dollar boondoggle.

    I commit to you that I will do my very best to educate my colleagues in Congress and challenge them to prevent any harm or injustice that would make your healing more difficult, just as I would want for my patients.

    Sincerely, Tom Price

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