Thursday, January 14, 2016

Clinton Campaign Starts to Play Dirty Politics Against Sanders.

The Clinton's, both Bill and Hillary know what its like to be on the receiving end of dirty  dishonest politics. Unfortunately it seems that Hillary Clinton or her strategists have decided that if you can't beat'em join' em when it comes to trying to win using dishonest political attacks.

Hillary Clinton seems to be willing to resort to the same dishonest tactics that were launched against her in the past and were the earmark of Tea Party Right politics of distortion and half truths. And it's obviously  because she is now losing decisively in the polls in New Hampshire to Sanders and by landslide numbers, losing to him in Iowa,  and  has seen  a 20 pt lead nationally evaporate to 7 in less than a month, and all for good reasons  --  her new found embrace of Obama's failed, weak and capitulating policies in return for the Obama run DNC to tilt the playing field in her direction as even the esteemed David Gergen pointed out was obviously the case. Which is why the DNC refuses to schedule more debates.

In response to Sanders surging numbers, Clinton and her surrogates including a Clinton PAC have resorted to lying about the Sanders healthcare proposal and Sanders position on guns by using dishonest scare tactics about his policies.

Lie is the only word for it --  a knowing and intentional misrepresentation of the truth to try and gain some personal advantage or benefit. That's what a lie is. As opposed to a fib. Or white lie.  Its not an honest disagreement on policy. Its lying to falsely make one side look bad and the other side look good or better than it deserves.

And now they've even sent out  Chelsea to misrepresent Sanders healthcare policies in the hopes of stemming the tide.

Democracy For America, a Progressive group, wrote: 

"Unfortunately, over the last few days, the Clinton campaign has launched extremely dishonest attacks against Bernie Sanders on an issue that defines what it is to be a Democrat -- universal healthcare. In those spurious attacks,  the Clinton campaign has completely distorted and misled voters about Bernie's universal healthcare plan."

Chelsea went on the attack against Sanders by saying she "can't believe that there would be someone in the Democratic party arguing against Obamacare".  

Really? How about the 35 million uninsured, most of whom are Democratic voters and for whom Obamacare did nothing because Obama sold out the public option to the corporate interests of the health insurance lobby who actually wrote the insurance part of the bill and who's lowest end bronze plans designed  for the previously uninsured are such junk that less than 3% of the uninsured have bought them since the 2013 implementation of the Unaffordable Care Act. 

 For the record and as will be shown in great detail in a future piece, Obamacare is an unmitigated failure in what healthcare reform was supposed to do -- get healthcare coverage for the 35-40 million Americans who have no healthcare coverage and bring down the obscene cost of healthcare in America for those who do.  Obamacare is the product of Obama's sell out to the insurance companies by willingly dropping the government run public option  when it had already passed the House and had the votes to pass in the senate. 

Even the White House admitted in a New York Times article last year, that the low end policies offered by insurance companies on the exchanges designed for those who couldn't afford healthcare insurance were garbage. Their word was " substandard".  To say the least.

Those policies had expensive monthly premiums , as high as $600 a month, high deductibles, high co-pays and in most instances people who have them have had to travel as much as 100 miles one way to find a doctor or clinic who will accept the low end policies. Which is why Obamacare enrollment, miniscule to begin with among those who were uninsured, despite the White House lies about the numbers, dropped by 2/3 the second year of Obamacare from the first.

The only positive part of the ACA is the expanded Medicaid, which would have been unnecessary under a public option,  and left up to the governors of each state to implement so that in a state like Louisiana where Jindal rejected it,  270,000 eligible for expanded Medicaid didnt get it.

The  White House and political arms of the Democratic party fund raising machine controlled by Obama have lied about Obamacare more than Nixon lied about Watergate. Especially about the numbers. Obama even lied again during the State of the Union trying to move the goal posts of what healthcare reform was actually supposed to do by trying to make  the policy fit the reality when he said that the purpose of Obamacare was  to "fill in the gap of employer based health insurance when someone lost their job so they didnt have to be without insurance". Really? Since when?  Since Obama decided to lie about it for the umpteenth time to cover up its massive failures.That was never the purpose behind what healthcare reform was supposed to do.

Chelsea Clinton said Sanders would " dismantle Obamacare". Let's hope so.  But Chelsea only told a half the truth without saying what Sanders would replace it - a Medicare for all type policy that is far superior to the failed Obamacare based on the idea that healthcare should be a right which the public option would have provided and not a privilege. 

You have to feel for Chelsea. She is just trying to help her mother and is saying what she's been told to say almost of all of which is factually untrue. And given the falsity put out by Brian Fallon, Clinton's new press secretary on CNN recently,  he might be the villain putting lies in Chelsea Clinton's mouth.

Chelsea Clinton also said Sanders policy would end the Children's Health Insurance Program. A lie. She said Sanders would dismantle Medicare and strip millions of their coverage. A lie. 

What Chelsea  also doesn't say is that the sign ups for Obamacare on the state exchanges have been so anemic, something Obama has lied about repeatedly mostly because the low end policies are the equivalent of junk bonds, the Inspector General issued a report that 22 of the 23 state exchanges are going to close because they are awash in red ink because of low sign ups and can't sustain themselves. Only the Maine exchange has its head above water and not by much.

Sanders has proposed a Medicare for all type single payer system that would extend Medicare to everyone, not dismantle it. What it would dismantle is the failed Obamacare law that not only hasnt helped the uninsured despite the lies being propagated by Obama and the phony numbers being put out but, in April of this year, when those 35 million who are mostly Democratic voters and still uninsured get hit with a $700 reduction in their expected tax refund, the penalty they are going to pay for  not buying the garbage insurance policies Obamacare is trying to force them to buy, Clinton's support of Obamacare could  insure the nomination for Sanders.

Unfortunately what we're seeing now from the Clinton campaign is the kind of misstatements and outright lying about Sanders that Republicans usually level against Democrats.

But Clinton won't be able to rewrite history. At the time the Unaffordable Care Act was passed Bernie Sanders who was a staunch supporter of the public option was asked what he thought about the Affordable Care Act. His answer then? "It's better than nothing". Now Sanders has a better idea thats not just better than nothing, it's better than Obamacare.

When even the usual timid CNN points out that what Chelsea Clinton was saying about Sanders healthcare proposals wasn't true, you have a big problem. Clinton has also been playing fast and loose with the truth about Sanders on gun control when Sanders has said repeatedly he supports expanded background checks including those for gun shows.

Even Clinton supporters have to feel disappointed and even embarrassed over the recent dishonest attacks  and misrepresentation of Sander's policies and positions on healthcare and guns.  If they aren't, they ought to be. If its not a sign of desperation it feels like one.

 Obamacare is a disaster, an Obama betrayal and sell out to the health insurance companies and an abject failure, maybe the worst sell out of a government policy to a special interest group in history  and Clinton's support of Obamacare and attacks on Sanders wanting to replace it, just promises more of the same. And that isnt going to work.

And while Clinton is resorting to half truths about the tax increase for a middle class family that would pay for the single payer system without mentioning the $5,000 at least that  would be a net saving for a middle class family in insurance premiums and put the money back in their pockets as income, it might be a good idea to refer back  to a CBS/New York Times poll in June of 2009 on the health care debate and promised public option where 72% said they wanted the public option and incredibly, 66% said they were willing to pay higher taxes to get it.


Anonymous said...

Tom--you ain't much of an economist. If you were, then you'd know Bernie is lying through his teeth.

"Sanders is right that we shouldn't just think of his single-payer health plan as a $15 trillion tax increase. We should ask whether people would be better or worse off in total. But even by that measure, lots of low and middle income workers would, in fact, be worse off and paying higher taxes."

"Could you turn the US into a Sweden-style social democracy without having the broadly based, high taxes they have in Sweden? Not really, no."

"Every advanced country that has this kind of expansive role of government in the economy pays for it with substantially higher tax burdens on middle income people. Every one of the big welfare states in Europe, for example, has a VAT/Sales tax in the 20-25% range and has high income tax rates that apply to large segments of the population, not just the top. Ordinary workers in those countries bear a larger share of the government bill than we do in the US, not a smaller share."

Anonymous said...

And other lies by Bernie--

Bernie got Two Pinnochios (almost Three) on this one.

Anonymous said...

And of course Bernie does not have the guts to stand up to the most powerful lobby in the United States--the gun lobby. So why don't you write about that?

"I find it kind of interesting, you know, he voted against the Brady Bill five times. He voted for what the NRA said was the biggest NRA priority, giving them immunity," Clinton told supporters at a campaign speech in Ames, Iowa."

"He says, 'Well, I’m from Vermont.' Pat Leahy, the other senator from Vermont, voted against immunity for the gun lobby. So no, that’s not an explanation," she added."

"If you’re going around saying that you stand up to special interests, well then stand up to the most powerful special interests. Stand up to that gun lobby," she added."

Anonymous said...

I was very sorry to see that Hillary Clinton has decided to campaign on Obama's record. I agree that he has been a major disappointment, especially (to me) regarding his lie about not having enough votes to pass the HEALTH INSURANCE INDUSTRY HANDOUT BILL (call it what it is!) without a public option, and then claiming he never promised a public option while campaigning (despite numerous videotapes showing he did just that).
I do disagree, though, with the notion that Bill Clinton did not take advantage of his position of authority over Monica Lewinsky, simply because she may have been into it. It's irrelevant to the 2016 election, for sure; Hillary Clinton is certainly not at fault for what her husband did. As I recall, it came out after Bill Clinton's trial ended that Henry Hyde (R, IL) chief prosecutor at the trial, had had an affair with a married mother of 3 children while his own wife was in the hospital. Of course, "that's different" said the Republicans. Instead of defending Bill Clinton's actions, I'd respond by showing how this bad behavior is exhibited by plenty of Republicans (unfortunately), not claiming sexual harassment is not sexual harassment if the employee initiates it.
I don't think we can afford another term of Obama, either, and luckily we're not going to get one, regardless of what Hillary Clinton says now. I believe, if elected, she will be more liberal that her campaign promises reflect and Sanders will be more conservative (I think Paul Krugman said that in 2008 about Clinton and Obama.) Let's keep in mind, the prize is to keep the Republican crazies out of the White House, not lose more of Congress, and maybe even get some governorships. Whomever is most likely to do that when the primary comes around will get my primary vote, for what it's worth.

Marc Rubin said...

"Tom--you ain't much of an economist. If you were, then you'd know Bernie is lying through his teeth."

And you don't seem to be much of a truth teller, economist or know much about what people actually want. Sanders said clearly that his plan would raise taxes and on the middle class and of about 9% but the net affect would be thousands of dollars in savings in health care premiums for everyone which would have also been the case had Obama not sold out the public option to the health insurance industry in 2009.

And you might want to look at a CBS/New York Times poll in June of 2009 which showed that 72% wanted the public option which is the first step to universal health care and 66% said they were willing to pay higher taxes to get it. So you dont seem to know much about what people want and what people want and are willing to pay for , and not what economists or a bunch of people with eye shades say they want. What they want doesnt matter. It's what people want and are willing to vote for that is all that matters.

Marc Rubin said...

"And of course Bernie does not have the guts to stand up to the most powerful lobby in the United States--the gun lobby. So why don't you write about that?"

Okay I will. Sanders has a D minus rating from the NRA. Sanders also made all the sense in the world when he opposed holding manufacturers accountable for what criminals and nuts do with their guns unless of course the manufactures broke the law.

Its as stupid as being allowed to sue GM for someone deciding to use a car to run down a group of people. If you want to find someone to blame, blame gutless Obama who in his first two years in office had the biggest congressional majority of any president in 60 years, could have passed any gun control he wanted and reauthorized the assault weapons ban. He didnt because he has no principles or convictions, unlike Sanders who does. It took Sandy Hook, Colorado and Charleston to get him to try and do something but by then it was too late. I'll take Sanders over Clinton and Obama combined when it comes to gun safety legislation. And funny that you still ,dont deny Clinton's gutter politics and lies when it comes to Sanders and his health plan.

Marc Rubin said...

"Let's keep in mind, the prize is to keep the Republican crazies out of the White House, not lose more of Congress".

I agree and so far the polls show Sanders has a better chance of doing that than Clinton. He beats Trump by a wider margin than Clinton and beats Rubio and Cruz substantially while Clinton loses to both.

And your right about Henry Hyde and his hypocrisy.

I dont think any thinking person wants a third Obama term especially Democrats. Not after all of Obama's lies and reneging on promises and his bait and switch health care law. And Clinton's decision to embrace his policies in return for his pulling strings for her and all but endorsing her would make any Clinton-Republican election a close one where Sanders would beat any Republican handily.