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Posts Tagged ‘Abc News’

ABC/WaPo: Obamacare Remains Unpopular, Tea Party Favorable to Americans While Public Rejects Obama Talking Points by Large Margin

Sunday, March 28th, 2010

President Obama cannot like the new ABC/WaPo Poll that shows Obamacare remains unpopular and about 2/3 of Americans do not believe his health care talking points

In a final debunking of the spurious Gallup poll being used by the White House and establishment media to “prove” that Americans turned on a dime to now “support” Obamacare, ABC News and the Washington Post put out a new poll this morning which unequivocally evidences that Americans remain opposed to Obamacare:

In the days since President Obama signed the farthest-reaching piece of social welfare legislation in four decades, overall public opinion has changed little, with continuing broad public skepticism about the effects of the new law and more than a quarter of Americans seeing neither side as making a good-faith effort to cooperate on the issue.

Overall, 46 percent of those polled said they support the changes in the new law; 50 percent oppose them. That is virtually identical to the pre-vote split on the proposals and similar to the divide that has existed since last summer, when the country became sharply polarized over the president’s most ambitious domestic initiative.

The health-care debate galvanized the country to a remarkable extent. About a quarter of all adults say they tried to contact their elected representatives in Congress about health care in recent months, including nearly half of those who say they are “angry” about the changes. In general, opponents of the measure were more than twice as likely as supporters to say they had made the effort.

The ABC News/Washington Post poll found a full 50% of Americans oppose the Democratic health care reform package, while an astounding 40% of Americans “strongly oppose” Obamacare, which matches the all-time high found by this poll in “strong” opposition. The only change since the passage of the bill is a bit of a rally effect of Democrats, with strong support for Obamacare rising to 32%:
8. On another subject: overall, given what you know about them, would you say you support or oppose the changes to the health care system that have been enacted by (Congress) and (the Obama administration)? Do you feel that way strongly or somewhat?

……………….——– Support ——–         ——— Oppose ——–               No
………..NET Strongly Somewhat ……..NET Somewhat Strongly ……opinion
3/26/10 46           32                    13              50            10                  40                4
2/8/10* 46           22                   25              49             11                  38                 5
1/15/10 44            22                   22              51             12                  39                 5
*2/8/10 and prior: “proposed changes…that are being developed by”

This polling will finally put to rest the untoward and fraudulent efforts of the Obama Administration and establishment media to use the outlier, one-day Gallup poll showing Americans approve of Obamacare by a 49%-40% margin as it will be difficult to credibly claim that one-day poll, which stands alone showing a major bounce in approval for Obamacare post-passage, is at all realistic. Another interesting tidbit from this morning’s poll is that Americans are more likely to vote for a Congressperson who opposes Obamacare than one who supports Obamacare by 6%-8% margin:

24. Say a candidate for Congress voted FOR the changes to the health care system recently enacted by (Congress) and (the Obama administration). Would that make you more likely to [support] that candidate for Congress, more likely to [oppose] that candidate, or wouldn’t it make much difference in your vote? (IF SUPPORT/OPPOSE) Are you much more likely to support/oppose that candidate or somewhat more?

………………..—- Support —-            —- Oppose —–               No        No
…………………..NET Much Smwt       NET Smwt Much          diff.     opinion
3/26/10                26      16          9               32         6           27               40              2
3/26/10 RV        27      17           9               35         5          29               36               2
1/15/10*              22      12          10             31          7          24               45               2
11/15/09             25      13          12             29         8         20               45                1

Separately, the poll is slightly skewed regarding party ID, showing the Democrats with a 10 point partisan ID edge, which is probably at least a few points over reality, and the largest gap reported by this poll since November, showing the GOP at just 24%, which is somewhat counter-intuitive as the GOP has gained steam in recent months by riding the public’s opposition to health care reform.

Nonetheless, even with that skew, this ABC News/Washington Post poll conclusively proves that the “conventional wisdom” of Democrats and the establishment media that Obamacare would magically transform into popular legislation upon passage was and is completely false.  Even the left-leaning WaPo’s writeup on the poll admits that opponents are much more intense than supporters.

Despite the best efforts of the establishment media and Democrats to smear the tea party as racists, extremists and terrorists, Americans view the tea party positively (41%-39%), an improvement from February 2010 (35%-40%) according to this poll.

It would be interesting to know what the partisan leanings of the 20% with “no opinion” on the tea party now are, to determine if the tea party has room to continue to grow in favorability or is reaching its peak.

Finally, this polling also conclusively proves that Americans believe President Obama is lying about the Obamacare legislation every time he speaks of it, with large majorities believing Obamacare will weaken Medicare (not strengthen it), increase the deficit (not “historically” reduce it), worsen the quality of care (not improve it) and finally that many will lose their present plan or doctor (not “if you like your plan, you can keep it”):

More people see the changes as making things worse, rather than better, for the country’s health-care system, for the quality of their care and, among the insured, for their coverage. Majorities in the new poll also see the changes as resulting in higher costs for themselves and for the country.

Most respondents said reform will require everyone to make changes, whether they want to or not; only about a third said they believe the Democrats’ contention that people who have coverage will be able to keep it without alterations. And nearly two-thirds see the changes as increasing the federal budget deficit, with few thinking the deficit will shrink as a result. The Congressional Budget Office said the measure will reduce the deficit.

About half of all poll respondents said the plan creates “too much government involvement” in the health-care system, a concern that is especially pronounced among Republicans.

Senior citizens, who typically make up about one in five midterm voters, represent a particularly valuable but tough audience on this issue. More than six in 10 of those 65 or older see a weaker Medicare system as a result of the changes to the health-care system. Overall, seniors tilt heavily against the changes, with 58 percent opposed and strong opponents outnumbering strong supporters by a 2-to-1 ratio.

All told, it is clear from this ABC News/Washington Post poll, and all other post-Obamacare passage polls other than the spurious one-day Gallup poll hyped by the White House and media, that Americans simply aren’t buying what President Obama and the Democrats are selling regarding their massive new comprehensive health care reform plan. It will be interesting to see if these poll results change the “conventional wisdom” in Washington that continues to linger in the establishment media that Obamacare is somehow transformed into a popular piece of legislation because of its passage.

UPDATE: Ed at Hotair notes the depressing news for Democrats from this poll, even with the partisan ID skew, and the overwhelmingly negative ratings Obama receives on his next big focus: immigration.

With the WaPo survey oversampling by at least five points and perhaps as much as seven, it’s not too surprising to see Obama get a 53/43 approval rating in this poll. It should dismay Democrats to see ObamaCare still losing ground even after the Post had to amp up the partisan gap four extra points from the last survey. The other issue approval ratings won’t be much comfort, either:

* Health care – underwater, 48/49
* Economy – seriously underwater, 45/52, with 40% strongly disapproving
* Budget deficit – 43/52

Interestingly, Obama’s worst issue by far is immigration. Only 33% approve of his handling of immigration issues, while 43% disapprove, 28% strongly so. Obama has expressed interest in taking on immigration with the ObamaCare fight mainly over, but these numbers suggest that he may want to wait until after the midterm elections.

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Breaking: Sharif Mobley Tied To al-Queda Terrorist Leader Anwar al-Awlaki

Saturday, March 13th, 2010

American Jihadist Sharif Mobley Has Ties to Al-Queda Terrorist Leader and Yemeni Cleric Anwar Al-Awlaki

US authorities are now beginning to admit that Sharif Mobley, the American citizen from Buena, NJ who moved to Yemen in 2008 to pursue jihad, had strong ties to Al-Queda in Yemen, specifically Anwar al-Awlaki, the radical Islamic cleric who communicated with and inspired Ft. Hood terrorist killer and US Army Maj. Nadal Malik Hassan:

A New Jersey nuclear plant laborer arrested in Yemen with 10 other suspected al Qaeda members was in contact with the same radical Yemeni-American cleric tied to Fort Hood shooting suspect Maj. Nidal Malik Hasan, federal law enforcement officials told ABC News.

The New Jersey man, Sharif Mobley, was detained by Yemeni security forces earlier this month and taken to a hospital for medical treatment. He allegedly tried to escape from the hospital over the past weekend by grabbing a security guard’s gun and engaging in a gunfight that killed one of the guards.

As speculated by CentristNet a few days ago, it appears that the US government had knowledge of Sharif Mobley’s activities for “some time” before the public disclosure of his arrest by Yemeni authorities a few days ago:

U.S. on Mobley: ‘Reviewing His Past Activities’

U.S. law enforcement officials said they have been aware of Mobley for some time, and the FBI’s Baltimore field office currently is investigating him.

Did America Catch Another Lucky Break, like on Christmas Day, With the Yemeni Arrest of former US Nuclear plant worker and present al-Queda operative Sharif Mobley?

So far, the establishment media appears to be doing everything it can to downplay or otherwise dilute the importance of the Sharif Mobley story, as it very well could be that Yemeni authorities’ arrest of Mobley a few weeks ago (or months ago?) may have been yet another lucky break, similar to the Christmas Day al-Queda plot, for America in the War on Terror, disrupting a possible al-Queda plot against US nuclear facilities. The American media needs to do its job, and press the Obama Administration to explain exactly what its counterterrorism units were doing to track Mobley and ensure he could not return to the United States as a part of any possible al-Queda plot regarding nuclear facilities. For starters, was Mobley on a no-fly list, or was he in bureaucratic limbo and not on that list, like attempted Christmas Day bomber Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab.  ABC managed to obtain this quote from Yemeni authorities, but so far no on-the-record statements of any kind from the US government:

Mohammed Albasha, a spokesman for the Yemeni embassy in Washington, told ABC News that details of Mobley’s case “will be clearer in a couple of days.”

Asked about Mobley’s apparent connections with the cleric, Anwar al-Awlaki, Albasha said he was not surprised because radicals and extremists in Yemen seek Awlaki out.

“He is a fixture in jihad 101,” Albasha said of Awlaki.

The now-admitted Mobley link to Al-Awlaki, who is “a fixture in jihad 101”, is a giant red flag and should spur some intensive investigation by the US counterterrorism authorities and focus by the establishment media as to who knew what and when and further questioning of the US counterterrorism authorities as to what precautions are being taken now to ensure any Al-Queda plot on any of the six US nuclear facilities in which Mobley worked from 2002-2008 is quickly crushed by US and Yemeni authorities. Of course, the interrogation of Mobley could be a critical source of intelligence on any such plot or other activities planned by Al-Awlaki, and we can only hope that the Obama Administration’s HIG unit, or High Value Interrogations Group, has been activated and is handling the Mobley interrogation. As for now, the American establishment media is in dereliction of its duty to investigate and report on this issue and most others surrounding the Mobley case.

While the establishment media was quick to label American domestic killers Andrew Stack and John Bedell “right wing extremists”, despite their ties to left wing causes (Bedell was a registered Democrat, Stack’s suicide note praised Communism), no such labeling or discussion of any kind has occurred regarding Mobley, who was a Democratic activist in New Jersey who was actually paid by former Democratic Governor Jon Corzine’s (D-NY) campaign to turn out the Democratic vote in 2005. Instead, amazingly, the establishment media has managed to “blame Bush” for Mobley’s jihadist activities, claiming that Mobley’s terrorist moves are the result of the American wars in Iraq and Afghanistan:

WASHINGTON — The arrest in Yemen of a New Jersey man accused of joining Al Qaeda is the latest in an alarming string of cases involving radicalized American Muslims, a trend some experts link to the duration of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan.

About a half hour ago the AP released details on how Mobley tricked his Yemeni guard into unshackling Mobley for prayers, allowing Mobley to use his apparent high level of terrorist training to quickly murder that Yemeni guard and seriously wound another before being taken back into Yemeni custody:

New details about the episode obtained by The Associated Press indicate Mobley had a level of training and cunning characteristic of the al-Qaida terror network.

Two senior Yemeni officials involved in Mobley’s case said he was being treated for complications from a metal rod implanted in his leg some time in the past. The prison doctor had asked to transfer him to the hospital where he stayed for a week.

The officials agreed to discuss details of Mobley’s attempted escape on condition of anonymity because the investigation has not finished.

At the hospital, Mobley befriended his guards and asked them to teach him Arabic. He performed prayers, read the Quran with them.

On the day of the incident, the officials said, Mobley asked his guard to unshackle him from his hospital bed at prayer time. The guard did, but went into a washroom ahead of Mobley to perform ritual ablutions required before the five daily prayers in Islam, leaving his gun lying unattended.

Mobley snatched the gun and shot the guard twice — first in the head and the second in the chest — as he walked out of the washroom.

When a second guard outside heard the shots, he rushed in. Mobley shot him in the kidney and abdomen, leaving him in serious condition.

Mobley was then chased around the hospital until he surrendered.

One of the senior officials said Mobley’s targeting indicates he is highly trained in the use of firearms.

With US authorities now confirming that Mobley was a “highly trained” Al-Queda operative, America needs to know the details of our government’s activities to monitor, track and disrupt any plots Mobley, Al-Awlaki were planning in Yemen and further needs to know if the Obama Administration’s much heralded August 2009 HIG detainee interrogation program (which replaced Bush’s program) is now in operation regarding Mobley, as it should be. It is important to recall that the HIG was not in operation in the aftermath of the Christmas Day terrorist incident, despite Director of National Intelligence Dennis Blair’s claim in January 2010 that it was operational and should have been used in that instance.

As the health care debate nears its crescendo in Washington DC over the next week, it appears the establishment media would rather this Mobley story not be properly covered, and certainly the Obama Administration wants no part of a potential replay of the detailed digging done by the media in the aftermath of the prior lucky break America received when Al-Queda terrorist Umar Farouk Abdulmutallab failed in his mission to kill hundreds of Americans over Detroit on Christmas Day.

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Breaking: Attack on the Pentagon? Gunman Injures Two Police Officers; UPDATE: Shooter Identified and in Custody: John Patrick Bedell.

Thursday, March 4th, 2010

An unidentified gunman injured two police officers today at the Pentagon.

With little detail yet available, it appears that a unidentified gunman has shot two police officers in front of the Pentagon today, and the gunman appears to be in custody. ABC News reports:

ABC’s Steven Portnoy reported that Pentagon police had a suspect in custody. ABC’s Martha Raddatz reported that three ambulances were on the scene, and all parking lots at the massive Defense Department headquarters were closed off.

The shooting occurred at the Pentagon Metro Station, which is just outside the Pentagon’s main entrance.

The shots were fired at about 6:30 p.m. ET.

Pentagon Police spokesman Chris Layman told ABC News the initial report was that two police officers were shot. But local television station WUSA reported three people were injured. Two were taken to George Washington Hospital in Washington, the station said.

“All I know right now is that there was a shooting. We believe two officers, police officers, were hit. And I believe we have one person in custody,” Layman told ABC News.

With the President focused on pushing through his comprehensive health care reform plan, this Pentagon shooting could prove to be an unwelcome distraction for a Presidency already struggling mightily with its signature initiative. Our thoughts are with the officers involved and the families of all those who may have been hurt today at the Pentagon.

UPDATE: The gunman who shot two officers earlier today in front of the Pentagon has been identified as John Patrick Bedell, as noted by Hotair. Fox News has the details:

A gunman opened fire at the subway entrance to the Pentagon complex Thursday evening, wounding two Pentagon police officers before he was shot and taken into custody, officials said.

The motive for the shooting in suburban Washington, D.C., wasn’t immediately clear, but Fox News confirmed the gunman was identified as 36-year-old John Patrick Bedell.

A second person was being questioned by authorities, but sources say that person may just be a witness and not considered a suspect .

The man was calm as he approached the officers at the main entrance around 6:40 p.m., Pentagon Police Chief Richard Keevil said at a news conference. The officers asked to see his pass to enter the building; he started shooting without saying a word.

“He reached into his pocket and they assumed he was going to get out his pass and he just started shooting,” Keevil said. The officers were only “grazed” and immediately fired back.

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Obama Proposes Passing Partisan Health Care Plan Via Reconciliation Despite Bipartisan Opposition

Monday, February 22nd, 2010

Democratic President Barack Obama, and Democratic Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi and Senate Leader Harry Reid, signaled this morning the pathway for the final Democratic push for the passage of Obamacare: the reconciliation process

Three days before the highly publicized health care summit, billed by President Obama and Democrats as an opportunity for bipartisan negotiations regarding the provisions of a potential health care overhaul, the White House signaled its intent to move forward with a $950 billion dollar Democrats-only bill that can garner, at most, a bare 51 vote majority in the United States Senate. Indeed, eight Democratic Senators (including Lieberman) have already gone on record opposing the use of reconciliation to ram through the Obamacare package.   Despite Obama’s prior pledges of bipartisan negotiations with the GOP and this morning’s bipartisan rhetoric from the White House, the fact is that the only bipartisanship associated with health care reform is the bipartisan opposition in the House to Obamacare (39 Democratic “no” votes) and the bipartisan opposition to the use of reconciliation to pass Obamacare through the Senate.

The substantive content of this morning’s latest White House version of Obamacare is essentially the same plan negotiated between the President, House Speaker Nancy Pelosi and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid in the days leading up to Republican Scott Brown’s January 2010 election to the Senate from liberal Massachusetts and the White House roadmap contemplates the use of the reconciliation process in the Senate so as to avoid the need for a 60 vote majority:

“This is our take on the best way to merge the House and Senate bills,” a senior White House official told ABC News. The official said the proposal was “informed by our conversations from negotiations” before Sen. Scott Brown, R-Mass., was elected, thus depriving Democrats of their 60-vote supermajority, as well as from subsequent discussions.

“We thought it would be a more productive meeting if we brought one consolidated plan to use as jumping-off point,” the official said. “We hope the Republicans do the same.”

By posting their proposals in such a form, White House officials are providing a roadmap for how they think they can best pass health care reform in the new post-Massachusetts Senate race reality: have the House pass the Senate bill, then use reconciliation rules requiring only a majority Senate vote to pass the “fix” to make the bill more palatable.

In the conference call with reporters this morning accompanying the disclosure of the latest iteration of Obamacare, White House officials explicitly stated they intend to use reconciliation to pass Obamacare without any GOP Senate votes:

In the course of unveiling Obama’s new health reform proposal on a conference call with reporters this morning, White House advisers made it clearer than ever before: If the GOP filibusters health reform, Dems will move forward on their own and pass it via reconciliation.

The assertion, which is likely to spark an angry response from GOP leaders, ups the stakes in advance of the summit by essentially daring Republicans to try to block reform.

“The President expects and believes the American people deserve an up or down vote on health reform,” White House communications director Dan Pfeiffer said on the call.

Accordingly, it appears that the Obama Administration has settled on pursing the use of the Senate reconciliation process, instead of normal order which would require a 60 vote majority, to pass the most far-reaching reform of the health care system in our nation’s history. Indeed, the “package is designed to help us [use reconciliation] if the Republican party decides to filibuster health care reform,” stated White House Communications Director Dan Pfeiffer.

The new Obamacare policy summary
and the conference call with reporters strongly indicate that little, if any, substantive discussions will occur at Thursday’s health care summit as the Democrats have now settled on the use of reconciliation as the pathway to final passage of Obamacare. The GOP’s incremental ideas such as allowing the purchase of insurance across state lines, significant tort reform and the use of risk pools for uninsurable Americans with preexisting conditions are nowhere to be found in this morning’s announcement nor in the present Democratic bills in the Senate and House and are essentially inconsistent with the comprehensive, government-centered, Democratic health care reform plans. Furthermore, in a move apparently designed to paint the GOP as pro-insurance, Obama also proposed substantial new federal price controls over the cost of health insurance as part of this morning’s summary.

The above-described White House posture this morning stands in stark contrast to their posture just two weeks ago when the idea of a health care summit was first pitched by President Obama. At that time, Obama promised to engage in substantive negotiations with the GOP on all parts of health care reform plan during the summit:

“I want to come back and have a large meeting, Republicans and Democrats, to go through systematically all the best ideas that are out there and move it forward” Mr. Obama said in the interview from the White House Library.

The 2/8/2010 NYT piece quoted above notes that it “remained an open question whether the meeting could lead to real consensus on health care, or whether it would serve only to allow Democrats to frame a political argument against the Republicans going into the midterm campaign.” Considering this morning’s developments, and the clearly stated intent to move forward with reconciliation passage of the intra-Democrat negotiated Obamacare, there no longer remains a “open question” and instead Obama intends the coming summit to “serve only to allow Democrats to frame a political argument against the Republicans going into the midterm campaign.”

For the ideological left, this morning’s White House summary and the coming health care summit represent “the last, best shot” to pass a comprehensive, government-centered health care reform plan. To a majority of Americans, including almost all conservatives, a strong majority of independents and even some liberals, the Obama Administration’s continued relentless focus on forcing a strongly partisan Obamacare package through Congress is an unfavorable development, as shown by public polling of Obama’s job approval and the approval of the Democratic health care reform packages in Congress.

At least eight Democratic Senators have already announced their opposition to the use of reconciliation to pass Obamacare, and those Democratic Senators will almost certainly be joined by the 41 GOP Senators in opposition to the President’s reconciliation plan as announced this morning. It appears from early GOP responses that the GOP intends to attempt to garner 10 Democratic Senator votes to block the use of reconciliation (with 10 Democratic votes, the GOP would have the 51 votes needed to block reconciliation).

Indeed, the irony of the health care reform debate and Obama’s continuous public pledges to engage in bipartisan negotiations with the GOP is the fact that the only bipartisanship associated with health care reform is the bipartisan opposition in the House and Senate to Obamacare, and the next few weeks will probably determine if the GOP is able to garner enough bipartisan support to block the passage of Obamacare through the 51-vote (50 votes plus VP Biden tiebreaker) reconciliation process.  Finally, should Obama succeed in finding 217 House votes and 50 Senate votes for Obamacare, the response of the electorate towards those Democrats in November 2010 may be an historic wave of GOP victories rivaling or even surpassing the 1994 GOP wave.

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