Observing from beyond the solar system, a cultural outsider looks in.

Monday, June 04, 2007

Edwards denies Bush frame, leads on Iraq and UHC

John Edwards dominated the first half of the Democratic debate last night. In fact, it seemed like he did so well that they stopped asking him questions in the second half. The "liberal" media wouldn't want Edwards to get away with a clear win, I suppose.

Denying the Bush administration's frame, Edwards told the crowd there is no war on terror. It's nothing but a bumper sticker, said he.

I reject this bumper sticker, Wolf, and that's exactly what it is, it's a bumper sticker. As president of the United States, I will do absolutely everything to find terrorists where they are, to stop them before they can do harm to us, before they can do harm to America or its allies. Every tool available, military, alliances, intelligence, I will use. But what this global war on terror bumper sticker - political slogan (that's all it is. That's all it's ever been.) was intended to do, was for George Bush to use it to justify everything he does: the ongoing war in Iraq, Guantánamo, Abu Ghraib, spying on Americans, torture. None of those things are OK. They are not the United States of America.

In response, Hillary Clinton defended the bumper sticker and used Bush-like fear words to justify it. She also claimed that we're safer than we were before. Oh really?

When discussion came around to the Iraq war, Edwards continued to show the leadership he's been showing for months now, calling forcefully for an end to the war and for Congress to not back down to Bush. He pointed out that of the senators who are running, only Chris Dodd spoke out strongly against the funding bill that recently gave Bush everything he wants. Clinton and Obama voted against the bill, but they did so at the last moment and without speaking out or trying to rally other senators to the cause. As Edwards said, there's a difference between leading and legislating. Edwards is leading with his vocal opposition to the war.

On the issue of health care, Edwards rightly pointed out that he is the only candidate in the top tier who currently has a detailed universal health care plan. He drew the distinction between his plan and Obama's, which is not universal. Hillary, despite constantly trying to position herself as the leader on health care, has not yet come out with a plan, though she has made a speech or two.

I don't know about you, but it infuriates me that any Democratic candidate in this election would dare to propose a health-care plan that is not universal, particularly after promising to enact universal health care by the end of his first term, as Obama did in the previous debate. I was happy to see Edwards calling him out on this.

It also bothers me that Hillary Clinton, who failed to pass a health-care plan during the Clinton administration, tries to position herself as the leader on health care, in spite of not having a plan.

The issue of health care is personal to me. As an injured worker, and a friend of several other injured workers, I have seen firsthand how easy it is to fall through the cracks in our system. I have seen how easy it is to be forced to move from your home and become displaced, when the system doesn't work for you. As John Edwards often says, "we're better than this. The United States of America is better than this."

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Blogger Boadicah said...

I agree, AstroGirl, it was gratifying to hear Sen. Edwards call Senators Clinton and Obama to task for failing to lead on the funding bill. They voted the right way, but that is legislating, not leading. They should have been speaking out and asking their fellow senators to vote against caving to the White House instead of slinking in to vote no at the last minute.

I also wonder where Sen. Clinton's health care plan is. And I wonder why she has been annointed by MSM as the health care expert, considering she already threw in the towel on universal health care.

Not only is Sen. Edwards' plan universal, but it forces private insurers to compete directly with the government plan, something Obama's plan does not do. That in turn, could well lead to a single payor system.

Great diary!

June 04, 2007

Blogger Shar said...

Edwards is our best hope for a comprehensive universal heatlh care plan. The health care markets that may very well lead to single payer is brilliant. Inclusion of mental health, to be treated as a medical condition is excellent, as well as being able to take your health insurance with you when changing jobs.

Obama implied that not everyone can afford health insurance, but Edwards plan addresses that with subsities to make his plan affordable for everyone.

Good diary,

June 04, 2007


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