Wednesday, August 04, 2010


This may have no practical impact, but it's significant, and it's not going to be an isolated event:

Missouri voters on Tuesday easily approved a measure aimed at nullifying the new federal health care law, becoming the first state in the nation where ordinary people made known their dismay over the issue at the ballot box....

Residents in Arizona and Oklahoma are expected to cast ballots this year on amendments to their Constitutions aimed at accomplishing the same idea....

That's from The New York Times, which arrives at an odd conclusion about the results:

In the end, though, the referendum seemed not to capture the general population's attention. Instead, Republican primary voters (who had the most competitive races on Tuesday) appeared to play a crucial role in the vote's fate.

Really? I'm looking at election results here and I can't help noticing that there were more "Yes" voters -- voters rejecting the health care mandate -- than there were voters for all the candidates in the top-of-the-ballot GOP race, the primary for a candidate to succeed Kit Bond in the U.S. Senate.

The referendum vote was:

Yes: 667,680
No: 271,102

The total number of votes cast for the nine candidates in the Republican Senate primary (which Roy Blunt easily won) was 577,612 -- 90,000 votes fewer than were cast against health care reform. Which suggests that anti-HCR voters were more motivated to vote in the referendum than to vote in the primary, that virtually all Republicans voted with the anti-HCR majority, and quite possibly that a fair number of Democratic primary voters joined them.

The opposition to health care reform is Obama's other oil spill. He fought to pass the bill, but he did too little as the toxic, ill-informed anger against the bill spread. And now there's so much pollution in our discussion of this subject that we may never be able to clean it all up.

(Via Memeorandum.)


AND: I agree with Zandar:

Yanking the mandate is the new gay marriage ban, and that was nothing but a winner for Republicans before for turnout. That's what I'm taking away from this now.

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