Various Democrats are now campaigning on the tweaks they’re going to make to Obamacare.
From what I understand, it is perfectly normal for any large piece of legislation to be tweaked along the way – and the scale of the law has not really been seen since the Lyndon Johnson era.
But it’s the change in the Democrats’ rhetoric that is fascinating me. They are reclaiming the middle ground. We saw it in the New York Times profile of Obama last weekend. As Congress lurches towards the right, it is the Democrats who are claiming that THEY are the reasonable, balanced ones.
In many of its specifics, health reform is quite popular: for instance the pre-existing condition provision and the 26 year olds on their parents insurance.
The Republicans need to be wary. Yes, they are going to be more effective at galvanising their supporters to vote in the mid-terms. But a result of that will be a Congress further to the right than the American people as a whole. Act too belligerent, get over zealous in their Conservatism in the next 2 years, and the very people who opt out of this election will come out in force and hand Obama a landslide in 2012.