I think it was Michael Kinsley who once defined a gaffe as a moment when a politician accidentally speaks the truth. President Obama had one of those moments, one worthy of his Vice-President, when he admitted during a conference call with liberal bloggers that he doesn’t know what is in the health care bill he swears we need to pass NOW:
During the call, a blogger from Maine said he kept running into an Investors Business Daily article that claimed Section 102 of the House health legislation would outlaw private insurance. He asked: “Is this true? Will people be able to keep their insurance and will insurers be able to write new policies even though H.R. 3200 is passed?” President Obama replied: “You know, I have to say that I am not familiar with the provision you are talking about.”
In other words, he has no clue about a controversial and important provision within the biggest social engineering project since the Great Society or the even the New Deal – an issue that was central to his candidacy. What else is in there that he’s “not familiar with?”
This is typical of Barack Obama, however: he is not interested in details at all, preferring to deal with the bright, shiny idea -in this case, health care for everyone that doesn’t cost a penny more- and leave the grubby details, even the big ones, to others.
We’ve seen this before. He left the stimulus package and the budget solely to Congress, and they both became budget-busting, pork-laden monstrosities that were nothing more than letters to Santa from progressive Democrats. The same is true of the forthcoming cap-and-trade legislation, which again will do nothing to control greenhouse gases (which aren’t even a problem, anyway) but everything to benefit the favored groups and industries of leftist congressmen and senators. Obama can’t be bothered; details are just distractions.
I’m not saying he should be a micro-manager: far from it. My own style of management is to delegate, giving competent people their assignments and letting them do their job, and I think it’s the best way to operate. But Barack Obama takes it too far, and Congress is killing him and his agenda for it – and harming the nation because of it. Congress is a collection of parochial interests and without someone to ride herd over them (ideally the leadership, but these clowns are as bad as the worst back-benchers), they will turn every bill into a pork bonanza in order to buy their reelections.
President Barack Obama may be a thoughtful, intellectual man, but, by his own admission, he’s also a lazy president. In the end, that may cost him not only his agenda, but his presidency.
It may also work to the nation’s advantage.
RELATED: Michelle Malkin also notes the president’s lack of familiarity with his own health plan and calls Code Blue.
LINKS: Ed Morrissey notes the cluelessness. Baseball Crank remarks on the insular president and how, unlike George W. Bush and Sarah Palin, Obama gets a pass from the press for not reading their columns.