What would happen if Senate Democrats MADE the Republicans actually use the filibuster to kill a decent health care bill? (Perhaps a bill without the pork, but with a public option.) How would the country respond if they saw the Republicans reading the phone book day after day to kill health care reform?I don't think that it would matter. I think that the people who support health care reform would continue to do so and become even more disgusted with the Republican party, and those who oppose health care reform would continue to express their opposition and cheer the Republicans on for protecting them from Obama's plans for advancing socialism.
I wasn't certain of my answer when I read Jack's questions a week ago, but yesterday I read the results of a recent poll that confirmed what I have suspected for some time--how do I say this in a civil fashion--there are a lot of people who can't think their way out of a paper bag. The reality of the Republicans carrying on a marathon filibuster to prevent health care reform should offend the sensibilities of the American public but I don't think that those already opposed to health care reform would find it offensive. On the contrary, I think that they would applaud the Republicans.
The poll was commissioned by Daily Kos and conducted by non-partisan independent pollster Research 2000 and included 2,000 people who identified themselves as Republican. Believe it or not, I actually have friends who are Republicans (okay only two that I can think of) and I don't consider one's choice of political party affiliation to be a sign of ignorance. I accept that my view of the role of government differs considerably from the view of government traditionally espoused by the Republican party. However, responses to this poll reveals a level of paranoid belief in utter nonsense that cannot be challenged by logic because anyone who believes this idiocy is immune to logic and truth.
The subtext to all of the opposition by some members of the public to any health care reform is a belief that undeserving people will gain benefits at the expense of hard working Americans. Who are these undeserving people? Well in the minds of the tea party followers they are non-white or in the U.S. illegally or don't speak English, or triple whammy--all three! The anti-health reform folks never imagine the people needing help looking just like them even though the reality is that it's not only minorities who need an improved health care system.
I don't think that Americans who do not already support health care reform will be offended in the least by watching the Republicans publicly demonstrate their commitment to blocking health care reform by filibustering. Instead, they will applaud their champions. I am reminded of a line from a poem by Erica Jong, "The best slave doesn't need to be beaten; she beats herself." Jong was writing of women cooperating in their own oppression, but it is applicable to the health care reform mess as well. The majority of people working so avidly against health care reform are themselves vulnerable to the capricious whims of the health insurance industry, nonetheless they choose to reject reform as a socialist plot cooked up by President Obama to destroy the country, filling message boards with cries of, "Stop Obama care!"
Dont't take my word for it. Decide for yourself, but first read some highlights from the Daily Kos poll:
63% of Republicans believe Obama is a socialist while 21% disagree and 16% are not sure.
42% believe Obama was born in the U.S. while 36% do not, with 22% undecided.
53% believe Sarah Palin is more qualified to be president than Obama while 14% do not and 33% are undecided. (I'm betting they also believe that the world is flat.)
31% believe that Obama is a racist and hates white people, while 36% say he is not a racist and 33% are undecided. (Clearly these people haven't been victims of racism long enough. I've never been undecided as to whether or not someone was a racist.)
24% say they believe Obama wants terrorists to win while 43% say Obama does not want terrorists to win, and 33% are undecided.
Not surprisingly, given that they believe Obama to be a foreign born, terrorism supporting, racist purveyor of socialism, 39% say Obama should be impeached; 32% disagree and 29% are undecided.
All of the questions were not about Obama:
67% say the only way for an individual to go to heaven is through Jesus Christ while 15% say it is possible through another faith, and 18% are undecided. (For some reason it gives these good Christian folks a real charge to think of others burning in hellfire.)
91% support the death penalty, 4% do not, and 5% aren't sure. (It's the undecided folks that really bug me. It's either yes or no, make up your mind!)
68% oppose Congress making it easier for workers to form and join labor unions, 7% favor it and 25% are undecided. (Now that corporations are persons, if they treat their workers unfairly, we can send the corporations to therapy to learn how to deal with their issues.)
For more results from the poll, check out Daily Kos. To read an interesting analysis of the poll results click here.