The president went to friendly territory (NBC News) to issue a half-hearted apology to the American people on ObamaCare. In an interview last night, Obama told NBC's Chuck Todd: "I am sorry that they are finding themselves in this situation, based on assurances they got from me.” Are you satisfied with that apology? Many Americans aren't, myself included. The problem is that nowhere in his apology does Obama take responsibility for implementing the plan that is causing these people to lose their coverage, nor does he acknowledge that he accepts responsibility for lying to the American people. It's just not good enough. Obama went on to say, “We've got to work hard to make sure that they know we hear them and that we're going to do everything we can to deal with folks who find themselves in a tough position as a consequence of this.” Notice the language here. “Hearing” people is very different than accepting responsibility for their predicament and actively doing something about it. “Dealing with folks” makes it sound as though the victims are putting Obama out with their situation which he caused! Instead of saying “as a consequence of this,” Obama could have taken more responsibility for his own law: “as a consequence of my healthcare reform.” Instead, he shirks responsibility, as if he is detached from his own law and therefore detached from any responsibility as a result of this law. It came across as patronizing to many Americans who are being negatively affected by ObamaCare.
The Shirking Continues
The shirking continued when Obama let this little line slip: “given that I’ve been burned already with a website–well, more importantly, the American people have been burned by–a website that has been dysfunctional, what we’ve also been doing is creating a whole other set of tracks.” He's been burned by the website? Obama's political potency has been tarnished by the failed rollout of ObamaCare, and yet we're supposed to feel sorry for him? Obama is hardly the victim here. His administration made the decisions on how to handle the creation of the site, which we've come to know was a complete disaster. Political expediency was put above pragmatism and reality, because the people in charge had never run or built anything in their lives! But don't worry. Vulnerable Democrats have been granted a pass by the White House to beat up on ObamaCare in order to maintain their seats. The Politico reports today, “Democratic senators facing reelection have a green light to bash the White House and call for certain legislative fixes. But they’ve been urged by senior administration officials not to insist on delaying the controversial law’s core: The mandate for individuals to purchase insurance coverage or face penalties.” So they are allowed to get angry, they just can't actually do anything about it. Isn't that nice of the President? As Charles Krauthammer points out, the president (thanks to ObamaCare) has become “toxic.”
October Jobs Report
It's the first Friday of the month, so you know what that means. The latest jobs report was released this morning, and it is somewhat unusual compared to previous months and put in the context of the government shutdown. What's amazing here is that the government shutdown for most of October didn't really manage to impact the unemployment figures. Obama and the Democrats predicted catastrophic consequences if their big, bloated federal government wasn't able to function in its full capacity. Apparently those warnings turned out to be unfounded, just like they did with the sequester, which was supposed to result in apocalyptic economic consequences. But as James Pethokoukis points out, even if we added about 200,000 a month, it will take 5 years to return to the employment levels enjoyed before the recession. In other words, we are still far from recovered. We have a long way to go just to get back to where we were, much less grow in the future. With Obama's policies stifling opportunity and a record number of Americans leaving the labor force, it's hard to see how that will be possible.