A Jewish Republican activist recently asked me whether I thought the House Republicans would come up with a Contract with America. My answer: yes, with only one plank — repeal ObamaCare. That will dwarf all other issues, in part because it encompasses so many of the grievances accumulated by the Center-Right coalition in a little more than a year of Obamaism.
It simply isn’t the particulars of the bill that are so noxious. It is the perfect encapsulation of big-government liberalism. There are the gross fiscal recklessness, the massive spending, the huge tax hikes, the micromanagement of business, and the imposition of federal power in what was a realm previous left to states and private decision-makers. And if that weren’t enough, the bill and the road to its passage reflected the attitude of the Left toward the public — contemptuous and indifferent to its concerns and aspirations. In the accounting shenanigans and the loopy explanations, the Left could not conceal the rubes-will-buy-anything attitude.
So it should not surprise anyone that running against that will be the Republican message for 2010 and likely for 2012, as well. Yes, there is the high unemployment, but again, the argument will be that while voters wanted job creation, Democrats were passing health-care reform that constituents didn’t want. Yes, there is the corruption of individual House members, but the greatest corruption will be those members who sold out the voters for some special deal. (Uncovering the backrooms deals will be a full-time exercise.) You see the pattern here.
The Democrats are convinced the dim voters will learn to love ObamaCare. But they didn’t learn to love the stimulus. And the argument that they should love such a flawed piece of legislation soon became the object of derision and further fuel for populist anger. The reasons to hate ObamaCare are many and will resonate with a broad cross-section of voters. If the Democrats jam it through today, the 2010 campaign begins. And the anti-ObamaCare campaign will end only when it is repealed and when its supporters are bounced from office.