Wednesday, 18 March 2009

Obama: "Here's my guidance to you. Protect health care."

You should really read the excellent inside peak at the Obama White House just published in the New Republic. It's the story of how Health Care became a major priority of the President's budget, and what it demonstrates is that against some significant resistance from trusted advisors, Obama has been personally pushing for this since early on. In addition to the quote in the subject head above, I was very struck by this bit:

Obama's political strategists advised him to soft-pedal the topic. One of them was David Axelrod. Although personally acquainted with the flaws in our health care system because of his disabled daughter, he also understood public opinion: The middle-class voters whose support politicians covet were worried about the cost of insurance, but their enthusiasm for universal coverage seemed shallow. Obama, though, always insisted on keeping health care prominent in the election. "He said, 'I want to do health care as president,'" one senior adviser paraphrased, "'and I can't do health care if I don't talk about it during the campaign.'"
Wow. Strategy + tactics.

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