Daily Archives: August 3, 2009

Bromley illustration

Support for the administration of US president Barack Obama is fading, and the struggle over healthcare is a main reason. The Democratic party’s ambitions for health reform were only recently an electoral asset. No longer. A slim majority of voters – but a majority nonetheless – now says the plans emerging in Congress are unlikely to make them better off. Congressional action on the issue, once promised by the summer recess, has been delayed until the autumn, and some observers expect the whole endeavour to come to nothing.

One striking aspect of the story is the role played by the Republican party – namely, no role at all.

In Congress, effective opposition to the administration has come from moderate and conservative Democrats, members of the so-called Blue Dog coalition. The independent Congressional Budget Office has also harmed the legislation’s prospects by undermining the administration’s claims about costs. The Democratic plans, says the CBO in its tiresomely honest way, would “bend the curve” in the wrong direction. That verdict has sunk in with the public.

The remainder of the article can be read here. Please post comments below.

Clive Crook’s blog

This blog is no longer updated but it remains open as an archive.

I have been the FT's Washington columnist since April 2007. I moved from Britain to the US in 2005 to write for the Atlantic Monthly and the National Journal after 20 years working at the Economist, most recently as deputy editor. I write mainly about the intersection of politics and economics.

Clive Crook’s blog: A guide

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